Houston Posthumously Honored with Billboard's 'Millennium Award' Tonight, 5/20
The late Whitney Houston will be honored with the 2012 Billboard Millennium Award. A moving tribute dedicated to Houston will be performed by Jordin Sparks and John Legend as they take the stage to commemorate Houston's legacy. Houston's daughter, Bobbi Kristina, and sister-in-law, Pat Houston, will make a special appearance to accept the award in her honor. The award is to be presented at the "2012 Billboard Music Awards," hosted by Julie Bowen and Ty Burrell, which airs live from the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas tonight, MAY 20 (8:00-11:00 p.m., ET) on the ABC Television Network.
Whitney Houston, undoubtedly one of the biggest female pop stars of all time, set precedent with her accomplishments as a hitmaker that are nothing short of extraordinary. Houston became the first artist ever to have seven consecutive singles hit No. 1 on the Billboard Hot 100, which is still the record to this day. Four years before the practice became the norm, upon the advent of Nielsen SoundScan electronic point-of-sale data, Houston scored the first No. 1 debut on the Billboard 200 for a female performer. She is the only woman who commanded reigns of more than 10 weeks with multiple albums, and while no other woman has more than one such set, Houston had three -- "The Bodyguard" (20 weeks), "Whitney Houston" (14 weeks) and "Whitney" (11 weeks). Her 46 total weeks at the Billboard 200 summit are the most among women, and when her career-defining remake of Dolly Parton's "I Will Always Love You" wrapped its 14-week run atop the Billboard Hot 100 in 1993, the song stood as the longest-leading title since the chart's 1958 inception and became the biggest single in pop music history.
In 1992, Houston made her movie debut in "The Bodyguard," which not only broke box office records worldwide but was ultimately responsible for the biggest-selling motion picture soundtrack album of all time. "The Bodyguard" soundtrack album, featuring six Whitney Houston songs in all, sold more than 42 million copies worldwide. At 17-times platinum in the U.S., it was the biggest-selling motion picture soundtrack album in history. "Exhale (Shoop, Shoop)" is one of only 13 songs by women to have debuted at No. 1 in the Billboard Hot 100 history. The song, from the "Waiting to Exhale" soundtrack, opened atop the November 25, 1995 Hot 100. "Exhale" also led Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs for eight frames, becoming one of Houston's eight No. 1s on the tally. Houston additionally notched 10 leading titles on Adult Contemporary, making her one of just seven artists to reach the double-digit mark in the chart's 51-year archives. Moreover, Houston's gospel-soaked soundtrack, "The Preacher's Wife," became the biggest-selling gospel album in Billboard chart history.
Houston's last album, "I Look to You," was released in 2009, her first studio album in seven years. The album debuted at No. 1 on the Billboard Top 200 Chart and has sold over 2.5 million copies worldwide. "I Look to You" includes a star-studded lineup of producers and writers, including Alicia Keys, Swizz Beats, R. Kelly, Akon, Diane Warren, among others. The shadow of Houston's prodigious technique still looms large over nearly every pop diva and smooth urban soul singer, male or female. She is the recipient of an astounding 411 awards, including 6 Grammy Awards, 2 Emmy Awards, 16 Billboard Music Awards, 23 American Music Awards, MTV VMAs, NAACP Image Awards, People's Choice Awards, BET Awards, and many more. She is the only artist with seven multi-platinum albums, with 170 million combined albums, singles, and videos sold worldwide. Singing to audiences on every continent, Houston won her worldwide following the old-fashioned way... digging deep down into her soul as she found common threads with her millions of fans.