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The late Whitney Houston has earned her third diamond-certified album, becoming the first Black artist to achieve the feat.
The Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) and Legacy Recordings announced Wednesday that Houston’s 1987 sophomore album, Whitney, has reached diamond status, which is equivalent to selling 10 million albums. Her self-titled 1985 debut album and 1992’s The Bodyguard soundtrack were already diamond successes, selling 13 million and 18 million units, respectively.
Whitney featured four songs that topped the Billboard Hot 100 chart: the Grammy-winning “I Wanna Dance with Somebody (Who Loves Me),” “Didn’t We Almost Have It All,” “So Emotional” and “Where Do Broken Hearts Go.” The single “Love Will Save the Day” peaked at No. 9 on the chart.
Garth Brooks holds the record for most diamond-certified albums, with nine. Others with three or more albums that have reached diamond status include The Beatles, Led Zeppelin, Shania Twain and the Eagles.
The RIAA awards diamond plaques to albums and singles that reach 10 times platinum status. That once was the equivalent of selling 10 million songs or albums, but has changed since 2016, when the RIAA began incorporating streaming from YouTube, Spotify and other digital music services.
Wednesday’s announcement comes a week before Houston, who died in 2012, will be posthumously inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame’s 2020 class. The ceremony will air on HBO on Nov. 7 at 8 p.m. ET.
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