The discussion began simply enough. We were discussing Janet Jackson’s singing ability. We had all agreed that she was certainly adequate, and then we started to compare her to other singers. One of us, who had seen Janet in concert multiple times, insisted that Janet was the best singer she had ever heard.
Then Whitney Houston’s name was mentioned.
The Janet fan said absolutely, she was better than Whitney.
Oh, no she didn’t.
My friends turned to me and asked me to explain why Janet, in all of her glory was not a better singer than Whitney Houston. I managed to do so without uttering one expletive. Basically, all I said was that Janet was a great entertainer and she was good at what she does. I mean the choreography, along with singing (though Elton John apparently says she’s lip-synching), is a tough job. But if both of them were standing still behind a microphone, there was no way that Janet was a better singer than Whitney. In other words, I didn’t crush her, but I made the point persuasively.
But Jackson had her share of good songs, and great ones too. Those hits she had with Jimmy Jam & Terry Lewis were all well deserved. And I chose one of those (whose video features Jennifer Lopez, by the way) as today’s morning groove.
So, is Janet better? Was Whitney better? Answer the question, if you wish, in the comments.