The Greatest Love Of All

I was a huge Whitney Houston fan, I have all of her early work (up to the Bodyguard), and saw the movie in the show (albeit second run at the old Bremen Theater), but I was into Whitney for her music and yes she was attractive.

My happiest moments at Paul Revere School on the east side was that of singing her version of “The Greatest Love of All” with my classmates both in (and out), of music class. Whitney was a new, bright shining star in the mid 80’s and we loved her.

But lets be honest she hasn’t been THAT Whitney in a long time. The music industry will chew you up and spit you out but more importantly being with the wrong people can lead you down the wrong path and I think that’s the lesson her life should be for all of us.

I know personally from being a young impressionable person and getting involved with the wrong crowd my last year of high school and first year at DePaul University and the peer pressure and parties. From the outside it looks like a great life but up close its a different story, its like a Metra train that runs at 100 MPH and doesn’t make many stops (unlike the midday Rock Island), and once you get off that train its a relief. You are able to be yourself and that is invaluable and refreshing.

Plus I lost my brother due to the effects to drugs and alcohol, he died 11 years ago due to heart problems that seemingly were caused by years of alcohol abuse and off and on drug problem. I didn’t get to know my brother as well as I wanted to because of it. And he was a talented musician (especially drums and rapping), everything he touched he could do at a exceptional level, he was a smart, charming and handsome brotha but the grips of addiction are stong. And it takes everything from you eventually, even your life.

I know the media will portray Whitney as either a tragic figure or washed up songstress and the truth is, she was probably lost in this spiral of parties, drinks and who knows what else. Its easy to say well she could have just stopped, it takes two things, your will power and good strong people around you to pull you out. I can only hope she is now at peace.

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