Whitney Houston’s unmistakable voice and career had a big effect on the music business, which she left in a tragic and sudden way. The singer was known for her powerful voice, which earned her the nickname “The Voice” and many praises during her life and after she died.
But her drug use and troubled personal life behind the scenes became as famous as her music. Houston died on February 11, 2012, which was the day before the Grammy Awards. Her death sent shock waves through the music world and the rest of the world.
The singer drowned by accident in a hotel room, leaving behind his 18-year-old daughter Bobbi Kristina Brown. Here is everything you need to know about her sudden death and what she left behind.
What happened to Whitney Houston?
According to the 42-page coroner’s report, Houston drowned by accident. Heart disease and cocaine use were also factors in her death.
The toxicology report said that she died because of “cocaine and metabolites.” Marijuana, Xanax (an anti-anxiety drug), Benadryl (an allergy drug), and Flexeril (a muscle relaxer) were also found in her body, but they did not cause her death.
“There was water found in her lungs that indicated to us that she was alive when she was submerged underwater,” Los Angeles County chief coroner Craig Harvey told PEOPLE at the time. “According to our tests, the level of cocaine was not necessarily a lethal level of cocaine. But her death was complicated by chronic cocaine use and heart disease.”
Coroner assistant chief Ed Winter gave PEOPLE two possible reasons for her death: “She could have passed out first from the effects of the cocaine, or she could have had a heart attack and then drowned. It’s probably one of those two scenarios.”
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When did Whitney Houston die, and where?
Houston died on Feb. 11, 2012. Her death was recorded as happening at 3:55 p.m. Houston was found face down in her bathtub at the Beverly Hilton Hotel in Beverly Hills, California. She was not moving.
thinking about Whitney Houston always. pic.twitter.com/7ZMBU7D9vK
— i don’t think of her ✨ (@thefuckingvoice) December 26, 2022
The singer seemed fine when her mother, Cissy Houston, talked to her at 3:15 p.m. At 3:43 p.m., less than 30 minutes later, the singer’s assistant found her unresponsive in the bathtub and called hotel security.
Two minutes later, police officers came to her room. They were already at the hotel getting ready for Clive Davis’ pre-Grammy Awards party that night. Before 3:55 p.m., when she was pronounced dead, people tried CPR on Houston.
How old was she when she died, and what were her last words?
At the time of her death, the singer was 48 years old. At 3:15 p.m. on February 11, Houston talked on the phone with her mother. This was just 40 minutes before she was found dead in her hotel room.
Cissy Houston hasn’t said what they talked about on the phone, but she did say that her daughter seemed fine. Two days before she died on February 9, Houston met with Brandy and Monica while they were practising for Clive Davis’s party on February 11.
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Later that day, Houston sang “Jesus Loves Me” with Kelly Price at a pre-Grammys party in Hollywood. It was the last time she sang in public.
What were people’s reactions like when they heard of Whitney Houston’s passing?
People all over the world were saddened by her death, as were fans of her music. When word got out that the singer had died, it was on the front page of newspapers and talked about by many people.
Davis was Houston’s friend and mentor. Even though Houston’s body was still in the hotel until 12:45 a.m. on February 11, Davis still held Houston’s pre-Grammy party there.
Both Angela Bassett and Whitney Houston signed up to “Waiting To Exhale” because the other was in it. Angela told director Forest Whitaker: “If you’re directing and Whitney’s in it, how could I say no?”
Today marks the 27th anniversary of “Waiting To Exhale” pic.twitter.com/9O3VfWNgtK
— Dionne Grant (@DionneGrant) December 22, 2022
At the start of the event, he gave a tribute to Houston: “By now, you have all heard the terrible news that our beloved Whitney has died. I don’t have to mask my emotion in front of a room full of so many dear friends.”
The Grammy Award winner continued, “I am personally devastated by the loss of someone who has meant so much to me for so many years. Whitney was so full of life. She was so looking forward to tonight even though she wasn’t scheduled to perform. Whitney was a beautiful person and a talent beyond compare. She graced this stage with her regal presence and gave so many memorable performances here over the years. Simply put, Whitney would have wanted the music to go on and her family asked that we carry on.”
In the days after Houston’s death, many of her friends and fellow musicians paid tribute to her. Mariah Carey wrote on Twitter, “She will never be forgotten as one of the greatest voices to ever grace the earth.”
“To me Whitney was THE VOICE. We got to hear a part of God every time she sang. Heart is heavy, spirit grateful for the GIFT of her,” said Oprah Winfrey. Tony Bennett, Smokey Robinson, Toni Braxton, and a lot of other stars also sent messages of support.
On Feb. 19, the singer’s funeral was held in Newark, N.J., where she sang in the choir as a child. Alicia Keys sang an emotional version of “Send Me an Angel,” and Stevie Wonder told the mourners he “had a little crush on Whitney” before singing one of her favourite songs, “Ribbon in the Sky.”
What legacy does Whitney Houston leave behind?
Houston is still thought of as one of the best singers of all time, even though she died 10 years ago. Her impact on the music industry and culture as a whole can’t be denied.
As one of the best-selling musicians of all time, she continues to inspire movies and documentaries, posthumous music releases and charitable work.
Attended a premiere screening for the new Whitney Houston movie tonite—it covers the details of her life we all know and have seen countless times, but it’s worth seeing, even if just to preserve her legacy. The acting, music and directing were well done. #IWannaDanceMovie pic.twitter.com/PjFx4Bu8XA
— Sampson (@OfficialSampson) December 20, 2022
Whitney Houston made a “valiant attempt” to overcome her drug habit before her death, according to Clive Davis.
Before she died, Whitney Houston was fighting her addictions. Page Six reports that music expert Clive Davis, who gave the singer her first record deal when she was 20 and worked with her throughout her career, was shocked when she died in 2012.
“I was with her 48 hours before her death,” Davis shared in an exclusive interview with Page Six adding, “It never occurred to me” that she would die two days later. Houston had a problem with drugs her whole life, and she had been trying to get clean.
“She was showing me what she had done in rehab,” the record producer, 90, explained. “How she had given up smoking, how she had cleared her throat of nicotine. And she was wanting to start going in the studio…. I never would have thought 48 hours before her death, that she would pass, that there would be that horrendous, premature end to her life.”
He added, “She was making a valiant attempt during that period to give up drugs and rehabilitate herself.” The singer of “I Will Always Love You” was found unconscious and submerged in a bathtub in a Beverly Hilton suite on February 11, 2012. Paramedics did CPR, but she didn’t respond. She was 48 years old.
The Los Angeles County Coroner’s Office said that her drowning and the “effects of atherosclerotic heart disease and cocaine use” led to her accidental death. Toxicology tests showed that she also had Benadryl, Xanax, and cannabis in her body. The man who started Arista records still remembers when Whitney Houston sang “The Greatest Love of All” at her audition.
How does a generation that grew up laughing at comedians that made fun of Whitney Houston drug problem, Micheal Jackson’s vitiligo and R Kelly sex tapes try to argue that alopecia is off limits??🤔🤔🤔🤔.. seriously
— Brandon Lloyd (@blloyd0912) March 28, 2022
“I knew at that audition that this was a once-in-a-lifetime singer,” he shared. Davis says that the movie “I Wanna Dance with Somebody,” which he co-produced and in which Stanley Tucci plays him, “answers all the questions that the public wants to know about Whitney.”
“Whether it’s her sexuality, whether it’s how she reacted to any innuendo that she was not singing black enough, or whether it was the impact of drugs, or whether it was recording with me,” he said.
Long before she married and then divorced Bobby Brown, a member of the group New Edition, there were rumours that Houston was seeing her assistant Robyn Crawford.
Crawford wrote a book in 2019 called “A Song for You: My Life with Whitney Houston.” In it, she said that she and Houston dated after meeting at a summer camp in 1980 when they were both counsellors.
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“The film is very clear that she had an affair with Robyn as a teenager, and then she, on her own said, ‘This is not for me,” Davis explained. “And that, ‘I want a home. I want a marriage. I want children. I don’t want a life-and-death struggle with my parents. It’s against my religion. I want you to be my best friend.’”
“And those were the terms. I mean, it lists men that she had affairs with well before Bobby,” he continued. “She was very clearly attracted to men and was heterosexual. In her adult life, it was not an issue in her marriage. She was not frustrated sexually with Bobby. She was wildly attracted, perhaps too attracted, in a mutually self-destructive relationship, but she was not frustrated.”
Davis tells fans of Houston to see the movie in a theatre with a good sound system because it shows off all of Houston’s great songs and, of course, her voice.
Whitney Houston was a beautiful woman with the greatest singing voice of all-time.
She was also an out of control drug addict & alcoholic who married a total loser.
New Jersey in a nutshell.
— Jersey Jackas_s (@Oldglorycries) January 27, 2022
He continued, “That voice that was the finest of her generation, and is up there with the two or three best of all time. That is what the film does.”
The music executive, who has worked with artists like Janis Joplin, Santana, Billy Joel, and Pink Floyd, said he knows pretty quickly if he wants to work with someone.
“I don’t read music. I don’t play music. It is something that does hit me. But when you’re dealing with an artist, for example, going back, when you audition, let’s say a Springsteen when you audition a Patti Smith, you don’t know it on the first song. It’s a writing talent there. It’s uniqueness there.”
“I Wanna Dance with Somebody” is currently showing in theatres… Follow us only on Lee Daily for more news like this.