On this day in music history: May 17, 1986 – “…

On this day in music history: May 17, 1986 – “The Greatest Love Of All” by Whitney Houston hits #1 on the Billboard Hot 100 for 3 weeks, also topping the Adult Contemporary chart for 5 weeks on April 26, 1986, and peaking at #3 on the R&B singles chart on May 10, 1986. Written by Michael Masser and Linda Creed, the song is originally recorded by George Benson in 1977 for the Muhammad Ali biopic “The Greatest”. Famed Philly Soul lyricist Creed’s inspiration for writing the lyrics in part, come from her own struggle with breast cancer which she had recently been diagnosed when commissioned to write the song. Whitney Houston personally selects the song to record for her 1985 debut album, working with co-writer Masser who also produces the single. The original LP version is actually issued as the B-side of her first single “You Give Good Love”, but is remixed for single release (as an A-side) and is issued in March of 1986, quickly becoming Houston’s third pop chart topper. Sadly, songwriter Linda Creed loses her battle with breast cancer on April 10, 1986, just five weeks before the song tops the pop charts. She is only thirty six years old at the time. “The Greatest Love Of All” is certified Gold in the US by the RIAA.