Monday, February 13, 2012

Jennifer Hudson Tribute To Whitney Houston

67 comments:

kltx said...

I like it. I really liked it.

Maja. With a J. said...

Well done. She must have been quite nervous...

strawberrygirl said...

Beautifully done.

Cindy said...

I must be the only one that doesn't like this girl, no matter what she sings. I didn't like the way the song started because it was too creepy. I didn't like that she had her hair done like Whitney, I didn't like the way she sang the song and I hate the fact that she's the 'go-to' person to sing tributes. I just don't like her voice or her personality.

Vicki Cupper said...

It's a beautiful tribute, but I agree with Cindy. There's something about her that puts me off.

Ida Blankenship said...

I thought Jennifer did a great job, especially considering how she had less than 24 hours to nail this performance. I wonder how she kept her composure, honestly. You KNOW she must have grown up idolizing Whitney.

I do wish they had shown a few clips of Whitney singing, though. You can rhapsodize about That Voice all you want, but it would have been nice to remember her through some of her own incredible performances.

bnl1016 said...

Agree with Cindy. I don't like her either. Ever since her HORRIBLE acting in the Sex and the City movie. Whenever I see her all I can think of is that scene where Carrie gives her a Louis Vuitton for Xmas and her horribly delivered line "My very own Louis Vuitton!!"

She has a good voice but I'm sorry, to me its seems like someone who would have done Whitney justice (Celine or Marriah) wasn't available so they went with JHud because she has the ability to be there on a whim.

Vicki Cupper said...

Oh GOD, bnl! What about the line afterward when she was all twitchy and jerky but she was supposed to be sassy. I wanted to slap her!

CarolMR said...

It's Dolly Parton's song. She should have sung it last night.

BigMama said...

I thought she did a great job and look lovely.

bnl1016 said...

lol Vicki, I know, right? The whole scene is just ridiculous. Whoever edited that and thought "yup, that's good" should be banned from the industry for life!

timebob said...

The only thing that bothered me was it was for the memorium segment and all they showed was Jennifer singing and none of the people that passed away in the background. Whitney wasn't the only one to die.

btw, loved Bruno Mars having a hissy fit when he lost the grammy to Adele.

Ida Blankenship said...

I disagree about Celine or Mariah. Yeah, they each have great voices, but if either of them had been selected to deliver this tribute, they would have made the performance allllllllll about THEM. Ditto Beyonce, obviously. Jennifer wasn't trying to be iconic; she was just trying to be respectful.

That said, I don't fault anyone who doesn't like JH's voice. That's a subjective, visceral thing. Personally, I can't STAND the way Carrie Underwood sings. But I did like the way JH sang it without too many theatrical flourishes, and how she didn't mess with the original arrangement.

And dissing her performance in SATC is like picking out the stinkiest turd in a mountain of shit! That's not fair! ;-)

Cindy said...

timebob, I'm not sure that was genuine disappointment as much as it was Bruno Mars' bubbly personality. He seemed to be smiling while he had his 'fit' and he was the first to stand each time Adele won.

Lady Chatterly said...

Loved it. Song just right!

JHud, is a low key entertainer and thank God she is not like some of these twits her age.

Lady Chatterly said...

And she's a woman, not a girl.

MISCH said...

I hated the arrangement....I love Jennifer...but

bnl1016 said...

@Ida, my big problem with this is that not only is Whitney known for this song, she's known for the high notes she hits in the song. So, without that piece of it, it came of as very un-Whitney and in my opinion a weak "tribute" to her. If you want to tribute someone, you have to do it with a singer that can do it justice or it looks mediocre. JHud just simply doesn't have the range to do so. Truthfully, had Adele not just come off of her long break, she probably should have been first choice. Because she can do the highs and the lows. Maybe if JHud had done another song it wouldn't have been so noticeable to me.

I was at a Grammy party in NYC and people there (in the industry) were shaking their heads at the performance. They were the ones whispering that JHud was all they could come up with on such short notice because anyone not in LA for the Grammy's is here in NYC for Fashion Week.

gracehatter said...

Thanks Cindy...I thought maybe I was just projecting when I thought her hair was way too Whitneyesque and the dress as well. It creeped me out especially since I saw a tweet that said it had been discussed that MiMi sing the tribute but Clive Davis said it absolutely had to be J. Hudson. An ensemble rendition of The Greatest Love would have worked fine and would not have left this somewhat distasteful residue in my mouth reeking of...oh yeah...chasing the $!

KLM said...

What were your opinions of the Willie Nelson commercial? I was so moved by it initially (firstly, I love me some Willie, so his cover of the Scientist is the bomb as far as I am concerned), but man, it was such a buzz kill when I found out it was a Chipotle commercial!!! Argh. I'm glad they practice sustainable farming, but they are owned by McDonalds!! That sort of trumps any good Chipotle may be doing... Sorry to hijack this thread, just wondering what others thought...

MM said...

Aw, I'd cut Jennifer Hudson some slack. If she tried to sing it like Whitney, people would obviously say that she can't sing it as well as her. Also, she was supposed to appear with Chaka Khan who no-showed. Can you imagine all of this happening in 24 hours and JH just trying to roll with it?

gracehatter said...

MM, I'm not being critical of her, you know she was just in shock and knee deep in handlers. Is that what happened with Chaka Khan?

Ida Blankenship said...

@KLM -- "I'm glad they practice sustainable farming, but they are owned by McDonalds!!"

My heart sunk when I read your post -- but I checked the fount of truth known as Wikipedia (that's sarcasm, but I DO love Wiki), and it says McDonald's divested their interest in Chipotle five years ago.

I also really dug that commercial -- the song, the art direction, everything.

kltx said...

Ida, I agree 100%. Thank you.

Sue Ellen Mishkey said...

I thought she did alright. I didn't really expect her to be as good as Whitney because how could she be with that song?

Layna Day said...

Keep in mind a number of things:

1.) Jennifer greatly admired Whitney

2.) Whitney had met Jennifer several times and appeared to like her

3.) Both were/are being handled by Clive Davis

4.) Whitney had told Clive to give Jennifer her normal closing performance at Clive's big Grammy party

5.) Whitney's mother had given Clive the OK for Jennifer to do the tribute

It doesn't matter if YOU don't like Jennifer. It wasn't about YOU. It was about a younger singer paying honor to someone who she deeply respected and with whom she had a friendly relationship, and about who made the family comfortable.

Clive wasn't going to have Adele do it, no matter what. I like Adele, but she had no connection to Whitney. Jennifer did, on several levels.

If you didn't care for Jennifer's singing, TURN OFF YOUR TV. No one forced you to watch.

And no disrespect, but aren't most industry insiders very jaded? Jennifer could have channeled the ghost of Maria Callas and it wouldn't have been enough for some. There's just no pleasing those determined to be negative.

Whitney's family was happy with the outcome, we what think doesn't mean a damn thing.

Why look for something bad to say about Jennifer on something like ths? It wasn't about her and she didn't make it about herself. She honored Whitney and did a good job.

bnl1016 said...

Just to address one thing - no, most insiders are not jaded. Sometimes this is why I feel like I shouldn't post here the way I do. You have to be in the entertainment world to fully get it. Some people fight me on stuff I hear with my own ears and that's when I have to just walk away from it. I'm sorry that your opinion is that they wouldn't have had someone else do it but Jennifer was NOT the first person they tried to get.

Sue Ellen Mishkey said...

^Who was the first person?

Susan said...

I think Jennifer Hudson did well enough. I'm sure that was a ton of pressure. I would have preferred just a moment of silence, but of course the Grammys are going to ham it up and of course the song was going to be "I Will Always Love You" and of course Jennifer Hudson was the singer. Her relationship with Clive and Whitney prompted the choice, I'm sure.

I disagree that Celine or Mariah would have made it all about themselves.

Susan said...

bnl1016 - I love your insider scoop, so thank you for always sharing!!

KLM said...

@Ida, that is good to know - thanks!

bnl1016 said...

I honestly don't know who they contacted before Jennifer. I didn't care enough to ask and alot of what I hear is stuff I overhear other people talking about so I'm not in the position to get more details. But the people who were talking about it are in the position where they would have accurate info so I have no reason not to believe them.

Sue Ellen Mishkey said...

Hmm. Interesting. I wonder who the first person was? Alicia Keys?

not on my dollar said...

I agree with Cindy, Vicky and bnl but to each their own. If you like her fine, and if we don't that's okay too. It's just a matter of opinion.

Pattie said...

Jennifer did a lovely job. It was a tough situation. Imagine being asked to cover the signature song of someone you have idolized less than 24 hours after that person passes away. She looked beautiful and composed and sang wonderfully as herself - not trying to imitate Whitney or sing beyond her range.

I admire anyone who can perform in that type of scenario.

BigMama said...

@Ida and Lana- Thank you. You both said pretty much what I was thinking.

Frankly, I think if they had gotten anyone else, it would have turned into "THEM".

Layna Day said...

It's not a question of liking anyone. I'm fairly neutral on Jennifer. She has a good voice, but it's not for everyone.

But finding fault with her at a time like this--I don't get it and frankly, don't want to get it. It takes away from what's important.

JustJen said...

I didn't like it. The song choice was too strongly associated with Whitney, it didn't really matter what JHud did with it, it wasn't going to be "right". But if she just would have stepped out there, kept it simple, without the vocal flourishes, I would have respected her more. It just felt like she was trying to imitate but she isn't Whitney, she never will be. Singing "We love you Whitney"? She could have finished the song and softly said, "We love you Whitney" and it would have been better.

It didn't feel respectful.

libby said...

There's a blind on BG that strongly implies that Beyonce skipped the Grammys at the last minute because it wouldn't be all about HER comeback after baby.

When she was a no-show, my first thought was that Whitney stole her thunder.

selenakyle said...

I'm in the vast minority here...but I have never liked this song, sung by anyone--be it Dolly, Whitney or whomever.

It's annoying as all hell to me.

My faves from Whitney are "Do You Hear What I Hear?" at Christmas and "Greatest Love of All" the rest of the year.

JM2C.

Jasmine said...

I read what ya'll had to say- both sides- those who liked and those who werent as into JHud's performance. I can see both sides.

HOWEVER. In those first 5-10 seconds or so, when all you could hear was the opening ballad and a strong deep voice beginning the song, and the light hadnt quite hit her face...it was like Whitney was alive again somehow for me. And that alone, makes me treasure this performance.

She is never gonna BE Whitney, and unlike Xtina/Mariah/Celine or whomever, she didnt TRY to be Whitney and struggle to hit those highs and lows.
She quietly, and it seemed to me, painfully and emotionally, sung the song her way and ended it with a few soft words of love.

Btw- Timebob- they DID show those who died this year, before JHud sang her tribute. This is the video of just the performance, the Memorium played for before this and ended with Whitney, and then JHud began singing.

Rose said...

JH can sing but I would have preferred a different song. I didn't like the arrangement either and IWALY is so synomanous with Whitney ever since she covered it.

Deep said...

I can understand why Jennifer was chosen, especially given her association with Clive Davis. Even though I didn't want her to do the tribute, she did a lovely job.

But, as amazing as her voice is, I think she also showcased why no one can sing that song like Whitney could. Whitney has such an amazing voice- this one really hurts.

Sadie said...

Wow Jasmine! I'm so glad I wasn't the only one that thought for a split second at the beginning of Jhuds performance that whitney wasn't dead.

I totally agree with Layna Day's statements.

I'll add that even though we all know Jhud can belt, she sang the tribute song perfectly. With elegance and empathy - she sang it beautifully. I wouldn't have wanted anyone else to sing it. She even dressed the part, hair and all. She made sure the tribute was about whitney and not her. Bravo Jhud!

Princess said...

Some of you are putting WAY too much into this. They wanted someone to sing a Whitney song so they picked someone that could do a DECENT rendition of her best-known song, respectfully. The end. She had less than a day to rehearse and they said Jennifer constantly broke down crying during the rehearsals. As someone said, Celine, Mariah, Beyonce, etc would have made this song ALL about themselves.
The only thing I was disappointed about was the fact that every place kept reporting that Chaka Kahn would also be singing a song in tribute, which I think would have been appropriate considering Whitney started as a backup singer for Chaka (I'm every woman)when she was only 15, and Whitney also said Chaka was one of her idols.

Dulcinea said...

I agree with Carol; I really wished that Dolly would have come out and sung that song. Although I am in that small minority that cringes every time I hear that song. Whitney did an amazing job with it; just not my favorite, and it was waaaay overplayed for a long time.

Del Riser said...

I thought the other reason that song was chosen was because of the lyric, *I will always love you* as sung TO Whitney.

Jhud did fine.

I would have preferred a clip of Whitney singing her own songs for the tribute. That would have reminded everyone of the gift she had, without putting any other singer in the no win position Jhud finds herself in now.

MediaDarling said...

I like that Jennifer sang the song in an understated way. I thought it sounded elegant. Of course it made me miss Whitney because it just reminded you of how spectacular her voice was when she was really belting it out (and can anyone ever replicate that??), but I thought Jennifer did the best she could while trying to be respectful. I don't think she even wanted to try to hit those high notes like Whitney. She sang it beautifully, but the song belonged to Whitney and she wasn't going to try to take that away from her. She just wanted to do an elegant version. How can you ever really pay a big enough vocal tribute to a legend like Whitney? Especially in 24 hrs notice when everything was so raw. I think they did what they could and their hearts were in the right place, so that's what matters. Jennifer has always been humble, especially after the tragedy she went through losing her own mother and family members. Whitney and Clive both liked her. She's young, but sophisticated. She was the most considerate and appropriate choice, I think. I'd be really curious to know who else was the first choice if it wasn't Jennifer. I'm shocked Beyonce didn't jump on that train, but she was in Brooklyn eating pizza, so...

Blondie1001 said...

I didn't like it but that's because I wish they went with a different song. I mean, it's really a break up song and also Dolly Parton wrote it and it was hers first. It just felt weird-you can put in "Whitney we will always love you" but if you listen to the rest of the words it's kind of terrible (so I'll go, because I know, I will only be in your way? and she just died!) I didn't like the arrangement either. But I'd have liked a montage of Whitney clips or something. It's no fault of Jennifer's but I didn't like it at all and wish they did something else.

Jennifer H. said...

bn, saying you didn't care enough to ask sounds a lot like being jaded. Just because JHud wasn't the first choice doesn't mean she wasn't a good choice. She did a good job, in my opinion. Good, bad...they're only opinions; none are wrong. No one was going to sing that song like Whitney, that's the point.

Robin the Mad Photographer said...

Leaving out any issues w/the song choice, etc., I think Jennifer did a perfectly good job w/the song--it can't have been easy for her to have to jump in like than within 24 hours of the death of someone she knew and looked up to, but she managed it without falling apart, bless her heart. It would be interesting to know who the other performers were that were considered (I tend to agree that most of the usual suspects would have way overdone it), but it sounds as if Clive wanted JH, and what Clive wants, he generally gets.

On another note, was anyone but me a tad annoyed that they had Alicia Keys singing "Sunday Kind of Love" w/Bonnie Raitt? It was all I could do to not snarl at the TV "Move over, bitch, and let the REAL blues singer do it!" (Or am I just being a cranky sickly bitch myself?)

bnl1016 said...

So, not butting into a conversation I wasn't involved with in order to get some dirt makes me jaded? I'm sorry but to most people, that means I'm CONSIDERATE. Wow. Idk maybe other people would asked but I wasn't raised to interject myself in someone else's conversation.

Ida Blankenship said...

@Robin, you are NOT the only one. Bonnie's a class act, an icon, and she's got a smoky alto that perfectly fits any blues song. Alicia was NOT worthy of her company, IMO. She is SO overrated.

Vicki Cupper said...

I liked her first song, but now I hate her with a passion because of that dumb-as-shit NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO YAWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWKKKKKK!!!! song she did with Jay-Z. Fucking. Hate. That. Fucking. Song.

jax said...

i personally thought it was tacky as fuck to bring out the flavour of the month to sing her most famous song....especially when we all know WHITNEY hasn't been able to hit those high notes for years.

It was last minute but the producers and editors should have chosen to show clips of her singing and performing over allowing another artist to outshine her before the body was cold.

Laura said...

I agree with MediaDarling - I thought the song was done with class and tact - and not at all done to mimic or one-up Whitney at all. Extremely respectful.

RenoBlondee said...

Now I am dying to see this after reading all your comments. The video has been removed on here, but I have it on my DVR. Had to go to bed early for an early wake up. *off to watch*

Netta said...

Keep in mind too that JHud has lost some important people in her life the last few years, including her mother. I give her props for even getting through the song at all, and I'd much rather hear her sing then Beyonce. As if.

ITA about AK and Bonnie Raitt. Man, that was brutal. Not as brutal as Nikki Minaj, but close.

Lady Chatterly said...

Jax, JHud did not hit any of those high notes in that song. It was more subdued and understated.

Maja. With a J. said...

Still think she did a good job, but I do agree that IWALY wasn't the best song choice. I know Whitney had a huge hit with it... I thought "Where Do Broken Hearts Go" might have been a better choice.

Jason B E said...

Since Saturday I've heard this song broadcast non-stop. I feel like I'm back in 1993 when it was also played ALL the time during the first 6 months of that year. Freaky.

Geebz said...

Anyone remember the collaboration between Alicia Keys and Jack White? AK sucks and is severely over-rated.

Anotheramy said...

It was a perfect choice of song, because people will always love Whitney and JHud impressed the hell out of me.

Rose said...

I'm not a huge JHud fan but I wouldn't consider her the flavor of the month.

Lelaina Pierce said...

I think she did ok. She seemed emotional, nervous & like others said, she didn't have much time to prepare. Her voice, to me, is just not as strong as others but I get why she was selected.

Sherry said...

@Media Darling. Sorry but JHud does no song understated. She belts everything and sometimes a stong singer can pull back and make you want MORE not wishing you would give less. I think Whitney embodied that ability and I think Jennifer did fine. But I am not a huge fan of her voice. She is talented I just wish she would back off a bit. Lord, it's overpowering sometimes. That is all.

NYCGirl said...

I haven't watched the clip yet, but I just wanted to say that I'm in complete agreement with those who think Alicia Keys is overrated. I espoused this opinion at work once and was stared at like I'd sprouted a second head, so it's nice to know that I'm not the only one who feels that way.