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Music Industry Mourns Icon Houston

February 12, 2012 by staff 

Music Industry Mourns Icon Houston, Two loud booms jolted awake the music industry executive in her fifth-floor room of the Beverly Hilton hotel.

The time was 3:30 p.m. Saturday. The thuds seemed to be coming from the room below. The voice of a man, loud and urgent, followed.

It was only later that she learned the news: Whitney Houston, a guest in the room below hers, had died.
Cause of death: Unclear.

Time pronounced: 3:55 p.m., February 11, 2012.

Age: A mere 48.

The shock and grief from fans worldwide was immediate: Houston’s pipes and presence, her grit and glamour had made her an icon.
For a decade and a half, she ruled the charts: 170 million albums sold, including seven back-to-back multi-platinum ones.

Numerous No. 1 hits, including the biggest-selling U.S. single of all time, “I Will Always Love You.” Emmys, Grammys, Billboard Music awards. Dozens of them.

And while her luster had dimmed in recent years, as she battled drug addiction, Houston was in the midst of a comeback. A few shows here and there, mostly abroad, and a movie in the works.

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