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Whitney Houston's Triumph hide

When Whitney Houston's new album debuted at No. 1 three weeks ago, it matched a record achieved by only four other artists in pop history: Stevie Wonder (with "Songs in the Key of Life" in 1976); Elton John ("Rock of the Westies" and "Captain Fantastic and the Brown Dirt Cowboy," both in 1975); and Bruce Springsteen (the "Live" set last year). The feat means Houston is the first female pop artist to do the deed, and according to Billboard, she's also the first female artist to string together four consecutive No. 1 singles (including three from her debut album), and the first artist since the Monkees to reach No. 1 with the first two records released (they did it in the late '60s with their first four). How much of a crossover artist is Houston? The same week it zoomed to No. 1 in pop, "Whitney" only charted at No. 14 on Billboard's black charts.

Although "I Wanna Dance With Somebody" was replaced by Heart's "Alone" as the No. 1 single this week, it is No. 1 on the adult contemporary list, and it moved into contention on the black singles chart by jumping from No. 5 to No. 2. "Dance" also zipped from No. 9 to No. 4 in dance-club play.

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