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 latest feature – Chart Rewind – serves as a variation of our Retro Rewind assay to salute an entire era of music history.
This week, we’re so excited for ‘So Emotional’ – the sixth in Whitney Houston‘s historic string of seven consecutive Hot 100 chart-toppers.
Join us inside:
When she scored her first Hot 100 #1 hit with ‘Saving All My Love For You’ in 1985 (click here to read more), Whitney Houston unknowingly began planting seeds for a historic Billboard feat that – even at writing – is still standing the test of time.
Over the two years that followed the arrival of her first LP, 1985’s ‘Whitney Houston,’ the diva’s ascent to superstardom was aided by gargantuan sales of that effort (which held the record for “best-selling debut album for a solo artist” for years after its release), becoming the first female artist to premiere a project at #1 on the Billboard 200 (her sophomore album, ‘Whitney’), and – by October 1987 – having racked up 5 consecutive #1 hits on the Hot 100.
The pressure to continue that level of success was answered with ‘So Emotional’ – penned by Billy Steinberg and Tom Kelly, the songwriting masterminds behind Madonna‘s ‘Like a Virgin,’ Cyndi Lauper‘s ‘True Colors,’ and a number of other 80’s megahits. Acting as the third single from Houston’s second LP, the edgy, guitar-driven cut – released October 12, 1987 – stood as a sonic departure from the soaring ballads and safer Pop-buoyed uptempo tunes of her catalog up to that date. But, if the impressive #47 Hot 100 debut by the month’s end was any indication music lovers welcomed the deviation.
Just three months later, ‘Emotional’ became the first new chart-topper of 1988.
Along with the honor, Houston – then with six #1s to her credit – entered a historic three-way tie with legends The Beatles and Bee Gees for ‘most consecutive Hot 100 #1 hits.’ Before ‘Emotional’ had even been certified Gold by the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA), Whitney had already broken the record when she nabbed her seventh consecutive #1 hit, ‘Where Do Broken Hearts Go’ in spring of the same year.
Look below to see who joined Whitney in the top 25 this week 33 years ago.
Hot 100 This Week in 1988
Hot 100 This Week in 2021
Click here to see this week’s full Hot 100 recap.