CSPC: Whitney Houston Popularity Analysis

We'll Miss You Whitney 1963 - 2012

Selling high amounts of albums and singles with the same material is a tough target. This being said, The Bodyguard managed it perfectly. The lead single I Will Always Love You sold an absurd total of 10,56 million physical units, making it the highest selling single studied so far and replicating the album achievement, an unreal result. Just like in the album front, it tops none other than the Grease Soundtrack lead single, You’re the One That I Want. The Top 10 prior to this article is displayed below.

1 1978 SoundtrackYou’re the One That I Want [Grease] – 10,400,000
2 1997 Céline DionMy Heart Will Go On [Let’s Talk About Love] – 8,100,000
3 1984 George MichaelCareless Whisper [Make It Big] – 6,500,000
4 1975 QueenBohemian Rhapsody [A Night At The Opera] – 6,400,000
5 1999 Britney Spears…Baby One More Time […Baby One More Time] – 6,000,000
1 1992 – Soundtrack / Whitney Houston – I Will Always Love You [The Bodyguard] – 10,560,000
2 1978 – Soundtrack – You’re the One That I Want [Grease] – 10,400,000
3 1968 – Beatles – Hey Jude [Orphan] – 8,200,000
4 1997 – Soundtrack / Celine Dion – My Heart Will Go On [Let’s Talk About Love] – 8,100,000
5 1963 – Beatles – I Want to Hold Your Hand [Orphan] – 7,800,000
6 1977 – Soundtrack / Bee Gees – Stayin’ Alive [Saturday Night Fever] – 6,470,000
7 1975 – Queen – Bohemian Rhapsody [A Night At The Opera] – 6,400,000
8 1984 – George Michael – Careless Whisper [Make It Big] – 6,290,000
9 1999 – Britney Spears –  …Baby One More Time […Baby One More Time] – 6,000,000
10 1979 – Bee Gees – Too Much Heaven [Spirits Having Flown] – 5,640,000

Whitney Houston sold way more singles during the 90s than just this one with at least 2 songs from each era topping the million mark. With 7,44 million units sold combined, My Love Is Your Love hits performed incredibly well.

The Bodyguard (1992) – 4,074,000 equivalent albums

I Will Always Love You – 10,560,000
I Have Nothing – 1,150,000
I’m Every Woman – 1,440,000
Run to You – 290,000
Queen of the Night – 140,000

NB: Song It’s Gonna Be a Lovely Day which isn’t from Whitney Houston sold 300,000 units, adding 90,000 units to the album as we will see in final totals.

The Preacher’s Wife (1996) – 741,000 equivalent albums

I Believe in You and Me – 1,110,000
Step by Step – 1,280,000
My Heart Is Calling – 80,000

My Love Is Your Love (1998) – 2,232,000 equivalent albums

It’s Not Right, But It’s Okay – 1,450,000
Heartbreak Hotel – 1,600,000
My Love Is Your Love – 2,640,000
When You Believe – 1,320,000
If I Told You That – 130,000
I Learned from the Best – 300,000

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HI MDJ, can you tell us how many physical singles has whitney houston sold in USA?


What about Waiting To Exhale?


I wonder why hers and mariah touring numbers arent nearly as good as celine and madonna even if all their sales are insane


Mariah was never a huge touring act, even at her commercial peak, she only did like 13 shows total. Whitney Houston was a touring machine, doing over 400 shows between 1985 – 1999, but she toured before ticket prices spiked thru the roof, during the 00’s and 10’s. She didn’t overcharge people to come see her during her peak in the Bodyguard years too. Madonna’s touring numbers were good in the 80’s & 90’s, but she didn’t start bringing in huge numbers until the 2000’s, when artists started charging hundreds – thousands of dollars for 2 hour shows. Celine benefited… Read more »


What’s interesting is that even in the 80s and 90s Madonna far outgrossed both Whitney and Tina if you compare how many concerts they did.

Tina for example did hundreds of shows on her tours, but Madonnas tours were far more successful if you compare how much they grossed with the number of shows they did.

Tina Turner Break Every Rule tour made 60 million out of 218 shows.

Madonnas Who’s That Girl made 25 million out of 38 shows.


Well, yes. Because Madonna overcharged people back then. She always did.


Or maybe other females couldn’t afford to charge as high prices as Madonna?

That shows a lot about Madonnas star power if anything.


Yes, Barbra Streisand charges even more than her. But its still greedy imo. Adele is starting to do it now. Horrible.

Ultimate Master

Can you please correct in Page 34 at the article, the seventh album doesn’t have question mark(?) in it’s name, which looks like (Just Whitney?) instead of the correct one (Just Whitney)

Ultimate Master

To those creators of this site, especially MJD, we need an update for Whitney’s article since it’s already longer than we expected.


Hello MJD , what are your estimations of Whitney’s albums sales in Argentina , Mexico and Brasil besides The Bodyguard? for the markets that are N/A i read that you use some formula were there’s no certification/known sales.

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