Whitney Houston Mourned
Autopsy Complete, Heart Attack Or Overdose Suspected
February 13, 2012 at 11:43 AM (PT)
The radio and music industry was stunned by the news of WHITNEY HOUSTON's passing SATURDAY (NET NEWS 2/11).
The latest update from CBS NEWS has HOUSTON's family being allowed to claim her body from the Coroner's office, and moving her to a funeral home. An autopsy on HOUSTON was completed , however there is still no official word on what killed the six-time GRAMMY winner.
"Law enforcement sources told CBS NEWS that while there were no illegal substances found in HOUSTON's hotel room, there were prescription drugs. Authorities said the most likely theories for HOUSTON's death are that she died of a heart attack or a prescription drug overdose, CBS NEWS correspondent JOHN BLACKSTONE reports."
Whitney was so full of life ... she was a beautiful person with talent beyond compare. She graced the stage with a regal presence.
CNN had earlier reported "Authorities were called to HOUSTON's hotel room at 3:43p SATURDAY after her bodyguard found her unconscious. HOUSTON was found in the room's bathtub, a coroner's spokesman confirmed. He would not confirm or deny a report by the entertainment news website TMZ that pill bottles were found at the scene. Someone in her entourage removed her from the tub and attempted CPR, the spokesman said. HOUSTON was pronounced dead at 3:55p, authorities said."
HOUSTON's passing was especially hard on CLIVE DAVIS, who was her mentor and longtime friend. DAVIS dedicated his pre-GRAMMY party to WHITNEY. MTV.COM quoted a visibly shaken DAVIS speaking of HOUSTON, "By now, sadly, we've all learned of the unspeakable [tragedy] of our beloved WHITNEY's passing. I don't have to mask my emotions, not in front of this room filled with so many dear friends. I am personally devastated. WHITNEY was so full of life ... she was a beautiful person with talent beyond compare. She graced the stage with a regal presence ... and her family asked that the show go on."
Radio Reacted Immediately
CUMULUS EVP/COO JOHN DICKEY said, "Her passing is both tragic and untimely. Her legacy to us is her music. Her legacy to the world is her daughter. Godspeed WHITNEY."
CLEAR CHANNEL MEDIA + ENTERTAINMENT released this comment: "WHITNEY HOUSTON was an amazing talent who made invaluable contributions to the music industry throughout her life and career. Along with her millions of fans around the world, we mourn her loss and send our most sincere condolences to her family."
CLEAR CHANNEL Pres./National Programing Platforms TOM POLEMAN shared with ALL ACCESS, "Our stations were on the air immediately with the sad news, playing WHITNEY's great music, and sharing emotional calls from listeners. WHITNEY meant so much to all of us. Our thoughts are with her family. On a personal note, I was getting ready to head to CLIVE's party when I heard the news. The evening became a very emotional tribute to WHITNEY. CLIVE is a class act."
CLEAR CHANNEL Top 40 WKTU/NEW YORK PD ROB MILLER noted, "WHITNEY was a pop icon -- such an amazing voice, incredible talent with a smile that would light up any room. I feel so bad for her daughter and the rest of her family. An devastating loss for them and a true void left behind in pop culture. Her music has been a huge part of KTU's history through the years and her passing hit particularly close to home, given that NEW JERSEY was where she grew up."
MILLER continued, "We heard the news just after 8p on SATURDAY night and once we announced it on-air, the phones started lighting up with shocked listeners. People were calling up crying, overcome with emotion and had so much to say. We felt the best way to grieve with them would be to turn the airwaves over to them and spotlight WHITNEY's music for the rest of the weekend. From 9p SATURDAY through midnight SUNDAY, it's been wall-to-wall WHITNEY HOUSTON on KTU. KTU's airstaff did an amazing and tasteful job of weaving the tributes called in by our listeners with WHITNEY's incredible repertoire of hits. This weekend made me proud to be in this business and again reminded me of how powerful radio is as a medium -- it's truly AMERICA's companion."
CLEAR CHANNEL SVP/Programming JOHN IVEY remembered, "What a great hit artist! Beautiful voice. First met her early on with RICK BISEGLIA and later on around her mostly with CLIVE. Every time I was around her she was nothing but sweet and nice. Last time I saw her was when the new record was coming out a couple of years ago and CLIVE and WHITNEY played it in front of a small group. DIANE WARREN was sitting in front of me and WHITNEY did a spot-on DIANE impersonation. Hilarious. Praying for her family and friends including DIANE and CLIVE."
The folks at CLEAR CHANNEL Top 40 KIIS/LOS ANGELES have put together an audio tribute to WHITNEY HOUSTON. The mix, produced by DJ SKEE, includes:
Intro, (montage), Greatest Love Of All, I Wanna Dance With Somebody (Who Loves Me), How Will I Know, I'm Every Woman, So Emotional, It's Not Right But It's OK, Didn't We Almost Have It All, Where Do Broken Hearts Go, (Simon Cowell interlude), I Will Always Love You.
CBS RADIO SVP/Programming GREG STRASSELL told ALL ACCESS, "KTWV (THE WAVE)/LOS ANGELES went all-WHITNEY following the news on SATURDAY evening for about three hours. [CBS Urban WVEE/ATLANTA] V103 did a three-hour tribute YESTERDAY from 12n-2p with morning talent FRANK SKI telling stories and taking calls, along with RYAN CAMERON from 2-3p. Many Classic Hits stations, including WODS/BOSTON and CBS-FM/NEW YORK, responded immediately with WHITNEY songs through out the night SATURDAY and all day SUNDAY. Top 40/Rhythmic WPGC/WASHINGTON, D.C. broke the story at 8:05p with News Dir. GUY LAMBERT on SATURDAY night, and went into all-WHITNEY mode until 10p. They also repeated with all-WHITNEY until 6p SUNDAY evening."
EMMIS Urban AC WRKS (KISS 98.7)/NEW YORK PD JAY DIXON told ALL ACCESS, "The outpouring of prayers, thoughts, feelings and condolences is overwhelming. 98.7 KISS is paying tribute to her with her music, highlights from her career and listeners sharing their fondest memories and how she affected their lives. We ask everyone to keep her family in their prayers and everyone close to her dealing with this tragedy. We're also putting together a tribute in her honor on MONDAY with details forthcoming. There will never be another WHITNEY."
EMMIS VP/Programming and KPWR (POWER 106)/LOS ANGELES PD JIMMY STEAL said, "Our entire POWER family was shocked and saddened by WHITNEY's untimely tragic passing. Her music will live on and continue to entertain, marvel and inspire us all forever."
RADIO ONE SVP/Programming JAY STEVENS said, "All of our stations have been airing her music and musical tributes as well as airing calls from listeners and Tweeting and re-Tweeting tweets from our listeners and various celebs. We also are following updates to this tragedy constantly on all of our websites. And in many of our markets the local TV stations were at our stations to interview our talent and document the reaction from our listeners and callers. We are the voice of the community for this tragedy. Listeners need a place to go where they can share their feelings with others and our stations become the social network for them."
The Music Industry Also Shared Its Sorrow
SONY MUSIC ENTERTAINMENT issued this statement: "WHITNEY HOUSTON was an icon and a once-in-a-lifetime talent who inspired a generation of singers and brought joy to millions of fans around the world. She had a voice of unmatched beauty and power that changed music forever, and she leaves behind an indelible legacy of timeless songs that will never be forgotten. She also was an important member of the SONY MUSIC family who spent her storied recording career with ARISTA RECORDS. She will be greatly missed. Our deepest condolences go out to her daughter and her entire family."
KENNETH GAMBLE and LEON HUFF, legendary "Sound Of PHILADELPHIA" producers and pioneers, released this comment, "WHITNEY HOUSTON was an unbelievable talent and one of the greatest voices of all time. Her passing is a tremendous shock and a terrible shame. She had a rough life and was under so much pressure as an artist, because she meant so much to the music community. She was one of the most admired singers ever, who was loved by everybody. We're praying for her family."
NARM Pres. JIM DONIO said, "The news of WHITNEY's death has sent shock waves around the world. She was, without question, one of the most brilliant and unforgettable singers the music industry has known or will ever know. When CLIVE DAVIS, former head of ARISTA RECORDS, presented WHITNEY to the industry at the NARM Convention in 1986, the reaction was instantaneous and irrepressible. Everyone in that audience knew they were witnessing the beginnings of a career that would reach amazing heights of greatness, and they were not disappointed. WHITNEY went on to dazzle music fans with her singular vocal ability, her beauty and her grace. Two years ago, I had the good fortune of being invited to a listening party for her comeback album 'I Look To You' and it was an evening I will always remember. She may have left us today, but that voice we all came to adore will never be silenced. NARM extends its deepest condolences to WHITNEY's family and friends."
Numerous Artists Tweeted Their Thoughts
MARIAH CAREY (@MariahCarey): "Heartbroken and in tears over the shocking death of my friend, the incomparable Ms. WHITNEY HOUSTON. My heartfelt condolences to WHITNEY's family and to all her millions of fans throughout the world. She will never be forgotten as one of the greatest voices to ever grace the earth."
KATY PERRY (@KatyPerry): "So devastating. We will always love you WHITNEY, R.I.P."
JUSTIN BIEBER (@JustinBieber): "just heard the news. so crazy. One of the GREATEST VOICES EVER just passed. RIP WHITNEY HOUSTON. My prayers go out to her friends and family."
CHRISTINA AGUILERA (@TheRealXTina): "We have lost another legend. Love and prayers to WHITNEY's family. She will be missed."
NICKI MINAJ (@NickiMinaj): "Jesus Christ, not WHITNEY HOUSTON. Greatest of all time."
LEANN RIMES (@leannrimes): "WHITNEY HOUSTON was the first CD I ever bought. She had a God given gift. Hopefully, she’s singing with angels now."