|Whitney HoustonBorn into a musical family on August 9, 1963, in Newark, New Jersey, Whitney's success might've been foretold. Her legendary heritage is as familiar as America's greatest icons: the daughter of famed singer Cissy Houston (who made her name in the Drinkards gospel quartet, and later the Sweet Inspirations vocal group of Aretha Franklin and Elvis Presley renown); and the cousin of singers Dee Dee Warwick (who introduced the original '60s versions of "You're No Good" and "I'm Gonna Make You Love Me") and her sister, superstar Dionne Warwick. Whitney's mother and cousins nurtured her passion for gospel music since birth. As a teenager, Whitney was already singing on the scene in New York, and records with her first young performances in the '70s and early '80s, album credits with such eclectic acts as Michael Zager, Chaka Khan, Herbie Mann, the Neville Brothers, Bill Laswell's Material, and others, are much sought-after collectors items.In 1983, near the end of Arista's first mega-successful decade of operation, Clive Davis was taken to a New York nightclub where Whitney was performing, and signed her on the spot. Two years went into the making of her debut album, but the results were worth it. The self-titled Whitney Houston (March 1985) launched Arista's second decade, and yielded a string of hits including "You Give Good Love" and three consecutive #1 singles, the Grammy-winning "Saving All My Love For You," "How Will I Know," and "The Greatest Love of All," which has become a veritable anthem. Not only did the album establish her as an important new recording artist, but it went on to sell over 12 million copies in the U.S., plus many millions more abroad. This LP set the record as the biggest selling debut album by a solo artist.With over 170 million combined album, singles and videos sold worldwide during her career with Arista Records, Whitney Houston has established a benchmark for superstardom that will quite simply never be eclipsed in the modern era. She is a singer's singer who has influenced countless other vocalists, female and male.Music historians cite Whitney's record-setting achievements: the only artist to chart seven consecutive #1 Billboard Hot 100 hits ("Saving All My Love For You," "How Will I Know," "Greatest Love Of All," "I Wanna Dance With Somebody (Who Loves Me)," "Didn't We Almost Have It All," "So Emotional," and "Where Do Broken Hearts Go"); the first female artist to enter the Billboard 200 album chart at #1 (her second album, Whitney, 1987); and the only artist with seven consecutive multi-platinum albums (Whitney Houston, Whitney, I'm Your Baby Tonight, The Bodyguard, Waiting To Exhale, and The Preacher's Wife soundtracks, and My Love Is Your Love).In fact, The Bodyguard soundtrack is one of the top 10 biggest-selling albums of all-time (at 17x-platinum in the U.S. alone), and Whitney's career-defining version of Dolly Parton's "I Will Always Love You" is the biggest-selling U.S. single of all-time (at 4x-platinum).