R&B legend Whitney Houston, who died on Feb. 11 at the age of 48, gave so many memorable performances, it was a challenge just to pick five. As we look back on the life of one of music's greatest performers, here are our five favorite performances.
"The Star Spangled Banner" —Jan. 27, 1991
At Super Bowl XXV in Tampa Bay, Fla., just days after the United States entered the Persian Gulf War, Houston gave one of the most memorable performances of the national anthem since Jimi Hendrix at Woodstock. This is the standard by which all other national anthem performances are judged.
"Home" —April 29, 1983
Nineteen-year-old Houston made her television debut with a song from The Wiz on The Merv Griffin Show, two years before her self-titled album was released. It was clear even then that Houston was destined to be a star.
"I Will Always Love You" —1999
At the 25th-anniversary celebration of Arista Records, the label founded by Houston's mentor Clive Davis, Houston — more mature and as confident as ever — gave a blowout performance of a song first made famous by Dolly Parton, but which will forever be known as a classic Houston hit.
"One Moment in Time" —Feb. 22, 1989
Houston opened the 31st Grammy Awards with the song written for the 1988 Summer Olympics in Seoul, South Korea. The song would become a favorite for sport montages over the years.
"Greatest Love of All" —Feb. 24, 1987
At the 29th Grammy Awards, Houston gave an inspirational performance of the song originally recorded by jazz great George Benson. The track first appeared on Houston's debut and was the B-side to her single "You Give Good Love." The unexpected hit would go on to be nominated for a Record of the Year Grammy.
Genetta M. Adams is a contributor to The Root.
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