7 Underrated Whitney Gems

We all know her hit ballads like I Will Always Love You,  Saving All My Love For You, and even the irresistibly sappy Greatest Love of All, but as we all know, Whitney’s repertoire has a lot more to offer. In commemoration of the great diva’s funeral today, here are 7 of her greatest albeit underrated singles:

“Hold Me” (Duet with Teddy Pendergrass)  – Whitney burst into the scene doing guest vocals for soul singer Teddy Pendergrass. This ballad was featured in Teddy’s album, “Love Language” in 1984 as well as Whitney’s eponymous first album making this, in effect, her debut single.

“The Star-Spangled Banner” – Whitney’s live Superbowl XXV rendition of the American National Anthem was so breathtaking, it became a megahit (understandably, only) in the U.S. Thus far, she is the only recording artist who broke the charts for putting her own spin on a national anthem.

Try doing that in the Philippines and you’ll get threatened with a lawsuit.

“Why Does it Hurt So Bad” – Heartbreak sucks. Especially when we all have to pretend we’ve moved on, when deep inside, we haven’t. Well. This song from the “Waiting to Exhale” soundtrack nailed it.

“Step by Step” – We’ve heard Whitney do better Dolly than Dolly. But did you know that she also did better Annie than Annie? This upbeat, more soulful take on an obscure Annie Lennox song was featured in “The Preacher’s Wife” soundtrack. Its music video gave birth to The Whitney Shoulder Bounce.

“My Love is Your Love”- The reggae-infused title track to Whitney’s 1999 album (her first after a decade of soundtrack work) featured the rap stylings of Wyclef Jean as well as an adorable vocal cameo by her then-6-year-old daughter Bobby Kristina. (“Sing, Mommy!”). And the “Amistad” reference? Brilliant. Just brilliant.

“Could I Have This Kiss Forever?” (Duet with Enrique Iglesias) –  Whitney forayed into Latin music with this steamy ballad from her Greatest Hits album. It was released as a single in 2000.

“Million Dollar Bill” – By the time “I Look To You” was released in 2009, most of us wondered: Can she still do it? Even when reports of her allegedly deteriorating voice kept plaguing the media. Somehow, this single gave us a glimmer of home that she’d be back in full swing. Alas, it was all downhill after that.

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