Sunday 15 July 2012

Jennifer Hudson Performs Whitney Houston/ Michael Jackson Medley

It's sad that Jennifer Hudson is getting more column inches for her astonishing weight loss than that astonishing voice, of late. But here at Divadevotee, we are still checking for the singer, and found this clip of the star performing at 2012 Taste of Chicago festival.

I'm really glad that this tribute to Whitney Houston was kept light and celebratory, with the inclusion of some of her best up-tempo numbers. Up till now, most of the tributes have been pretty sombre (which is understandable considering it wasn't long ago we lost Whitney), but I've always preferred to celebrate a life lived, than mourn its passing.

The Whitney Houston medley consisted of hits,  I'm Every Woman, How Will I know and I Wanna Dance With Somebody before ending with the honouring of another departed music legend, Michael Jackson. None of the songs really tested Hudson's voice- she saved that for her own material- but that wasn't the point of these renditions. This was a group of people, enjoying Whitney Houston and her music (just wait till the end to see just how much they did).


  1. Wow! That performance looked and felt way too much like someone going through the motions ( including that supposed interacting with the audience) and trying not to show her boredom. Horrible!
    Reminds me of a performance of Lauren Hill I once attended. I walked out of it and moved to the tent where Baba Maal was performing. And happy I did.

  2. I really admire J-Hud for not only tackling these big songs and as you say the whole celebrating her life but I have to also agree with Opie, it just seemed a little forced. Personally I would really much rather hear her sing her own material (which does not get the credit it deserves) than the covers, but at the same time it's great she is reminding us what we have lost in a positive way.

    She is one of the few vocalists out there that can hold her own with these songs but true enough they don't really test her vocal abilities, that's one of the things about her that gets me (even with her own stuff); she doesn't seem to push her own limits a lot of the time.

    Incredible singer never the less!

  3. The performance was really good but not great like Whitney could have done in her better days. Whitney could grab a note sing it softly and in the same breath take that note to the moon. I am not sure if we will ever see a vocalist do that with the same emotive voice Houston displayed.

  4. Can't say I ever considered Whitney's voice emotive. In fact I consider the lack of that quality her biggest flaw. Why exactly do you consider her voice emotive? How do you define that quality?

  5. ive always found whitney's voice to be emotive and i still get chills listening to her sing I will always love you - i guess whether or not one's voice is emotive is something subjective and it varies from person to person - i mean we all connect to different songs

  6. Actually, if you listen to her live performances is where you find the emotive voice. Her recorded material to me was straight laced from what she did live. It is funny I think Mariah Carey is the greatest recorded female voice but falls short live by not taking the music beyond the recordings while Whitney Houston excelled way beyond what was recorded.

  7. I always judge singer by live performances. And I was trying to find out whether you actually mean emotive or whether you mean elastic.

    I personally find Whitney's live performances to be giant ego sessions in which she did a lot of showing off of her technical skill but does little justice to the songs she was singing. Mariah I think is actually better at that. Maybe that is because she does her own writing?

    Have to again disagree with you regarding "greatest recorded female voice". I don't think there is such a thing. I think there are many. I could not possibly state Mariah's voice is better than Streisand's. Nor the other way around. I could not possibly state either woman's voice is greater or less great than Edith Piaff's or Janis Joplin's or Ella Fitzgerald ( a woman generally considered by most singers to be one of the ultimate) or Alison Krauss or etc etc etc

    I think a great singer combines a great voice with ability to use that voice, an ability to choose the best material AND the ability to tell the emotions of the song. To me Whitney was awesome at the first two, average at the third and sucked big time at the last. And that is the BIG one. After all, if the first two were the most important to the listener...we'd all still be listening to opera only. ;)