STATE OF NEW JERSEY
INTRODUCED FEBRUARY 21, 2012
Senator RONALD L. RICE
District 28 (Essex)
Senator RICHARD J. CODEY
District 27 (Essex and Morris)
Extends condolences to family of Whitney Houston.
CURRENT VERSION OF TEXT
A Concurrent Resolution honoring the memory of legendary singer, entertainer, and New Jersey native Whitney Houston and extending condolences to her family.
Whereas, Whitney Elizabeth Houston was born on August 9, 1963 in Newark, New Jersey where she lived until she was four years old, subsequently moving to East Orange, New Jersey; and
Whereas, Coming from a distinguished line of musical artists, including her mother Cissy Houston, her cousin Dionne Warwick, and godmother Aretha Franklin, Whitney Houston was surrounded by talent and had the pedigree of a star; and
Whereas, As a child, Whitney began singing gospel music and playing piano at the New Hope Baptist Church in Newark, New Jersey, where she captivated the congregation; and
Whereas, In the late 1970s, under her mother’s tutelage, Whitney toured nightclubs and sang backup for the Michael Zager Band, Chaka Khan, Lou Rawls, and Jermaine Jackson; and
Whereas, While on stage, her natural beauty caught the eye of a photographer which led to a successful early modeling career where she became one of the first African-Americans to be featured on the cover of Seventeen Magazine; and
Whereas, Legendary producer and music executive Clive Davis discovered 19-year old Whitney singing at a nightclub, who offered her a recording contract and worked with her to produce her first album, Whitney Houston, released in 1985; and
Whereas, Her first album produced three number-one singles and topped the Billboard 200 list for fourteen weeks, a first for a debut album and album by a female artist, and led to many awards, including a Grammy; and
Whereas, In 1987, her second album, Whitney, debuted at number one on the Billboard 200, a first for a female artist, produced four number-one singles, and won her several more awards, including her second Grammy; and
Whereas, A great humanitarian, Whitney was a supporter of Nelson Mandela and performed at his 70th birthday concert at Wembley Stadium, and she founded The Whitney Houston Foundation for Children, which helps to raise funds for needy children around the globe; and
Whereas, Whitney produced and released I’m Your Baby Tonight in 1990, which had six hit singles, went four-times platinum, and showcased her versatility as a singer; and
Whereas, In 1991, Whitney sang the National Anthem at Super Bowl XXV, which became one of the greatest performances in television history and was released as a single, the proceeds from which Whitney donated to The American Red Cross Gulf Crisis Fund; and
Whereas, Whitney starred in the film The Bodyguard and produced several songs for the soundtrack, including the iconic single “I Will Always Love You,” which went four-times platinum in the United States, a first for a female artist, and also earned her a variety of awards, including three more Grammy Awards; and
Whereas, During the 1990s, Whitney starred in several films, including the groundbreaking Waiting to Exhale, and through her BrownHouse Productions company produced projects that diversified and improved the roles that African-Americans portray in film and television; and
Whereas, The album My Love Is Your Love, released in 1998, garnered her another Grammy, and her musical collaboration with Mariah Carey for the film The Prince of Egypt won an Academy Award; and
Whereas, Whitney continued to sing and produce films, releasing Just Whitney in 2002 and I Look To You in 2009, and produced and starred in the film Sparkle, which she completed months before her death; and
Whereas, The Recording Industry of America named her the Top Selling Female R&B Artist of the Century and named The Bodyguard soundtrack the Top Selling Soundtrack Album of the Century in 1999; and
Whereas, She is the most awarded female artist of all time, is continually cited as being the number-one musical influence of countless singers and performers, and who history will remember as one of the greatest singers of all time; and
Whereas, Whitney Houston was a loving mother, a brilliant artist in the gospel tradition, a humanitarian, and a friend; and
Whereas, It is fitting and proper that the artistry and humanity of Whitney Houston, along with her achievements and contributions to New Jersey’s great musical heritage, be recognized; now, therefore,
Be It Resolved by the Senate of the State of New Jersey (the General Assembly concurring):
1. The Legislature of the State of New Jersey honors the memory of legendary singer, entertainer, and New Jersey native Whitney Houston and extends its condolences to her family.
2. A duly authenticated copy of this concurrent resolution, signed by the President of the Senate and Speaker of the General Assembly and attested by the Secretary of the Senate and Clerk of the General Assembly, shall be transmitted to the family of Whitney Houston.
This resolution honors the memory of singer, entertainer, and New Jersey native, Whitney Houston, and extends condolences to her family for their loss.
Whitney Houston was born in Newark, New Jersey where she was brought up in a talented musical family, singing gospel music at the New Hope Baptist Church. She was discovered by legendary music producer Clive Davis when she was 19-years old and subsequently released two wildly successful albums in the 1980s. She went on to star in several films with hit soundtracks to which she contributed. She has won the most awards of any female artist of all time and is revered as a master of her craft. Whitney Houston’s contribution to the world of music is immeasurable, and the Legislature wishes to acknowledge her value as a person and as a singer in New Jersey’s great musical heritage.