Whitney Houston, the iconic American singer whose battles with drugs, alcohol and ex-husband Bobby Brown marred her star power, has died. She was 48.
Houston’s publicist confirmed the singer’s death to ABC News. The cause of death is not yet known.
One of the first people we thought of as a parallel to Whitney Houston’s story was Judy Garland. That is not to compare their individual talents or impact on popular culture, but rather to imply that they were both immensely talented performers that shared a similar career arc. Early fame, a career in music and film, industry and media pressure, drug abuse, bad marriages, career downturn, attempted comeback and, tragically, an early death. We both hope that despite the public’s voracious appetite for stories like this, and tabloid journalism’s willingness to feed it, that this story does not turn into another Anna Nicole Smith circus. After all, there was a massive talent that should be celebrated. Not a tragic life that should be deconstructed.