Sunday, February 12, 2012

Where Do Broken Hearts Go?

Yesterday, February 11, 2012, will go down in Hollywood history as the death of one of America's greatest, singing voices.  The death of, Whitney Elizabeth Houston.  My "love affair" with Ms. Houston began back in 1985.  I was blown away by her beauty and her soaring soprano with its blood-tingling, gospel riffs.  I bought all her records during the '80s and '90s.  I was always ecstatic when she performed on awards shows.  My sister, Nay, and I would comment on how the woman didn't need to lip-sync like so many other recording artists 'cause she could sing the phone book.  One of my most favorite performances was when she sang, How Will I Know, on The American Music Awards back in 1986.  She looked stunning and sang that song with more sass and power than the original recording.  And another performance that slayed me was All The Man That I Need on Arsenio Hall's defunct, talk show.  Her vocal range was ridiculous that night!  I could go on and on with endless, other examples of her vocal mastery.  But, I won't.  Instead, I'll apologize to her for never really seeing her as anything other than a phenomenal voice.  I didn't really care about her life outside of singing.  I just wanted to hear her sing.  Over.  And over.  Again.  By the time she married Bobby Brown, I guess you could say I was a little surprised; based upon their diametrically opposing, public images and all.  At the time I wasn't Hollywood-savvy enough to realize that their public images were just that:  well-crafted, public images.  Who they really were only they and those close to them knew for sure.  Well, fast-forward fourteen or fifteen years later and she divored him.  But only after becoming addicted to cocaine and whatever else.  Her well-crafted image was shattered.  Her stunning beauty faded.  And her jaw-dropping, awe-inspiring, golden vocal chords were severed beyond repair.  It was then that I truly realized that it was only her voice I loved.  Because I never knew the woman.  The living, breathing human being.  All I knew and loved and adored and was interested in was...her...voice.  And when she lost it, I lost interest.  In fact, I couldn't bring myself to listen to her perform live after Bobby because the voice just wasn't the same.  Not by a long shot.  --- Now that she's gone, though, I wish I could've spoken to her one-on-one.  I have seen her only once in person, at The Costume Gala at The Metropolitan Museum of Art.  But that was back in the '90s when she still had a voice.  If I had met her within the past, two years or so, I would like to have asked her how I could help her feel good about being alive.  How I could help her mend an obviously broken heart.  Yes, I wish I could have had such a conversation with her.  But she's gone.  Thus, I can't help her in any way now. --- Her death has undoubtedly broken a lot of hearts.  So, God, I ask you with all due respect:  where do broken hearts go?  Can they find their way home?  I hope so.  Honestly, God...I hope so.

1 comment:

  1. Well written/ well said/ loved that woman's voice. Shame she didn't love it enough to keep it.