Chart Rewind: Whitney Houston’s ‘Greatest Love of All’ Landed at #1 This Week in 1986

Published: Friday 15th May 2020 by Rashad

Readers of That Grape Juice know what avid music lovers we are – especially of hits past.

So, as our retrospective segments, ‘From the Vault’ and ‘TGJ Replay,’  allow us the chance to re-spin the gems and jams of yesterday of one artist, our newest feature Chart Rewind serves as a variation of our Retro Rewind assay to salute an entire era of music history.

This week, we’re taking it back to one of Whitney Houston‘s greatest songs – ‘Greatest Love Of All,’ her third in a history-making string of seven #1 hits.

Join us inside:

Whitney Houston’s self-titled debut album was by no means an out-of-the-box success.  Released February 14, 1985, the set didn’t premiere on the Billboard 200 until over a month later – making an unimpressive #166 debut on the tally.

However, after the critical acclaim of its official first and second worldwide singles, ‘You Give Good Love’ and ‘All at Once’ respectively, the then-burgeoning diva notched two back-to-back Hot 100 chart-toppers (‘Saving All My Love For You’ and ‘How Will I Know’) by Valentine’s Day of the following year.

With the tunes’ parent album hitting #1 on the Billboard 200 in March 1986, Houston’s label president and mentor – Clive Davis – sought to capitalize on ‘Whitney-mania’ by appointing ‘Greatest Love of All’ as the LP’s next single.  A remake of the 1977 George Benson hit of the same name, the pick came as an interesting choice for Davis given his protest to her recording the song in the first place.

The move quickly proved lucrative, however.

Just two months after its March 1986 premiere, the song shot to #1 on the Hot 100 (where it was found this week that year).  Her third consecutive chart-topper, as a result Houston became the first artist to garner three #1 singles from a debut album.  Eventually, the tune went Platinum and even earned a ‘Record of the Year’ nomination at the 1987 GRAMMYs.

On this side of history ‘Greatest’ not only stands as her third biggest hit (physical sales, streams, digital downloads, and radio airplay considered) behind ‘I Will Always Love You’ and ‘I Wanna Dance With Somebody,’ but also her second longest-running #1 hit (behind ‘I Will Always Love You’).  Most importantly, as it relates to the totality of her prized discography, it is easily a frontrunner on the list of fan favorites and go-to songs for singers seeking to showcase their vocal prowesses.

As we salute the classic, look below to see who joins Houston in the top 25 this week 34 years ago.

Hot 100 This Week in 1986

Hot 100 This Week

Click here to read this week’s full TGJ Chart Check: Hot 100.

Your thoughts?

Comments 11

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  1. Oh plz May 15, 2020

    G.O.A.T….Whitney Elizabeth Houston. ❤️❤️❤️

  2. Clarks0o0ñ May 15, 2020

    Whitney Houston’s number one songs are more memorable than Mariah Carey’s number one songs

    I’m sorry it’s the truth.

    Whitney has more iconic hits than Mariah.

  3. Happy+n+Rich May 15, 2020

    The first singles of her first album were You Give Good Love and Saving All My Love for You. Then How Will I Know and Greatest Love of All. Greatest Love of All was actually the b-side to You Give Good Love and never intended to be a single, but heavy airplay forced Arista to release Greatest Love of All as a single.

    Whitney would have hit #1 again in the summer of 1986 if All at Once had been released as a single, but Clive decided to not oversaturate the market, as Whitney was already working on her second album.

    • Jigglypuff May 15, 2020

      So why they released all at once in europe…?
      Dumbass clive rejected “waiting For a star to fall” already.. +never knew this was a cover

  4. Happy+n+Rich May 15, 2020

    The 1986 chart is superior in every way.

    • Fancy BISH May 15, 2020

      Chile YES 😂 ✅ 💯

  5. Just Sayin’ May 15, 2020

    Such a classic song. Hard to believe it is older than me.

  6. I+love+big+black+c** May 15, 2020

    Thank god My grandma left me some Whitney old vinyls. I ain’t gonna sell it coz they are priceless

  7. Gee May 15, 2020

    This is a Whitney post Mariah should not brought up. If anything both women should be celebrated as today marks the 30th anniversary of vision of love being released. The girl who was supposed to be around 6 months has been around for 30 years. A lot of today’s pop stars will not have the same longevity as Whitney or Mariah.

  8. Jigglypuff May 15, 2020

    Rock is dead now. Rock songs was in chart in elder

  9. Fancy BISH May 15, 2020

    Rashad slaying articles today lol ✅ 💯 Pure CLASS. Captivating VOICE. Megawatt SMILE. Stunning LOOKS. Perfect SONGS. Black girl MAGIC. 🥰 Whitney combined R&B, Soul, Gospel, Pop, Adult Contemporary, Jazz and Easy Listening in a way that has NEVER been duplicated! 🤳🏽

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