June 1987: Whitney Houston Releases 'Whitney'

Whitney Houston
Photo Credit
David Corio/Redferns

33 years ago, Whitney Houston made a name for herself with her sophomore release Whitney, the first album by a female artist to debut at No. 1.

Two albums into her career, Houston changed the chart game forever as the only artist to land seven consecutive No. 1 hits on the Hot 100.

READ MORE: April 1988: Whitney Houston Becomes The First Artists to Score Seven Consecutive No. 1's 

Following the blowout success of her 1985 self-titled debut album, a sophomore slump might have seemed likely for the starry-eyed 24-year-old. But the R&B diva drew her fans right back with a career-defining album that would spawn four chart-toppers, including the Grammy-winning "I Wanna Dance with Somebody (Who Loves Me)."

1. "I Wanna Dance with Somebody (Who Loves Me)"

Tasked with releasing a follow-up that would match and surpass the smash success of her debut album and its three No. 1 singles, Houston raised the stakes with one of the greatest pop songs of the 80's.

From the song's radiating harmonies to the climactic key change, Houston launched into the superstar fame with her sky-scraping vocals on full display in this No. 1 dance-floor single. 

2. "Didn't We Almost Have It All"

With an energy that emanated both a profound sense of sadness ad artistic sensitivity, Houston bared her soul in this wistful number, stealing the gold with this fifth consecutive No. 1 hit.

Houston worked with an A-list team to piece together this scorching ballad, teaming up with producer Michael Masser and lyricist Will Jennings, who was also writing for The Crusaders and B.B. King. 

3. "So Emotional"

Music royalty Houston headed over to New York City to record this 1987 classic synth-pop track at Right Track Studios. Rolling Stones frontman Mick Jagger was recording next door and "had to come in and witness it," album producer Narada Michael Walden recounts. "He started jumping around, as he does, and he just couldn't believe the sound. Whitney was so excited about that." 

"So Emotional" scaled to the very top of the Billboard charts in January 1988 as the year's first hit single, giving Houston her sixth consecutive No. 1 and placing her in a three-way tie with The Beatles and The Bee Gees.

4. "Where Do Broken Hearts Go" 

The fourth single from Houston's second album, "Where Do Broken Hearts Go" launched the glamour girl into the stratosphere, officially setting her apart as the only artist ever to wind up with seven consecutive No. 1's. Written by Jekyll & Hyde composer Frank Wildhorn and R&B singer Chuck Jackson, this ballad would top the Hot 100 as the last in her remarkable 7-hit string, while making a No. 1 appearance on the Adult Contemporary, No. 2 on the R&B Chart.

Whitney Tracklist
*released as a single

1. "I Wanna Dance with Somebody (Who Loves Me)"*
2. "Just The Lonely Talking"
3. "Love Will Save the Day"*
4. "Didn't We Almost Have It All"*
5. "So Emotional"*
6. "Where You Are"
7. "Love Is A Contact Sport"
8. "You're Still My Man"
9. "For the Love of You"
10. "Where Do Broken Hearts Go"*
11. "I Know Him So Well"

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