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Music Industry Pays Tribute to Whitney Houston


Whitney Houston performs during the 21st annual American Music Awards at the Shrine Auditorium Feb. 7, 1994 in Los Angeles.

Whitney Houston performs during the 21st annual American Music Awards at the Shrine Auditorium Feb. 7, 1994 in Los Angeles.

The music industry is celebrating the life of Grammy Award-winning singer and actress Whitney Houston who was found dead at a Los Angeles hotel Saturday.

Houston's death comes on the eve of the Grammy Awards in Los Angeles, where the six-time Grammy winner had gathered with hundreds of artists for Sunday's program.

The organizers of the Grammys said singer Jennifer Hudson will pay tribute to Houston during Sunday's broadcast.

Police say the 48-year-old Houston was pronounced dead late Saturday afternoon in her room at the Beverly Hilton Hotel. Police say the cause of her death has not been determined.

Houston sold over 170 million albums and singles, making her one of the world's best-selling artists. Her self-titled debut album, released in 1985, sold 25 million copies worldwide.

Her talent took her from music to movies, where she starred in hits like The Bodyguard and Waiting to Exhale.

In recent years, she struggled with drug and alcohol abuse.

Beverly Hills police spokesman Mark Rosen says officers and medical personnel were at Houston's room within minutes after getting a call for an emergency.

"We were on scene within about two minutes, the fire department was actually here sooner than that," said Rosen. "They were on scene for the pre-Grammy party. Fire department and hotel security found her in her room unresponsive. They attempted resuscitation measures. They were not successful. At 3:55pm, Whitney Houston was pronounced dead in her hotel room at the Beverly Hills Hilton."

Officials say an attempt was made to resuscitate Houston by the emergency personnel who rushed to her room. Police say the cause of her death has not been determined. They have said there was no obvious sign of criminal intent.

Reactions to Whitney Houston's death continue to pour in. Music producer Jimmy Jam said it is ironic Houston's death occurred before the Grammys.

"You remember the first time you saw Whitney on stage singing was probably at this event. And so the irony of that is just crazy..so it's tragic," he said.

Legendary singer Tony Bennett said Houston was the "greatest singer I ever heard."

Another singing legend, Smokey Robinson, told CNN Houston was "one of the greatest singers to ever open her mouth."

Condolences and reactions from celebrities and everyday fans are also pouring in to social network sites.

She was married to singer Bobby Brown from 1992 to 2007. They have a daughter. Houston often blamed her troubled marriage on her husband, who was charged with domestic abuse in 1993.

Whitney Houston's musical prowess was not a fluke. She was inspired by a host of singers, including her mother, Cissy Houston, cousin Dionne Warwick and godmother Aretha Franklin, who expressed shock at Whitney Houston's death.

Some information for this report was provided by AP, AFP and Reuters.

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