First Hit #1: September 26, 1987
I was down on I Just Can’t Stop Loving You, but I’ll give it some credit – it’s a hell of a lot better than Didn’t We Almost Have It All. As usual, it’s not Whitney Houston’s fault that she’s singing nothing special. She gives it her all, and like usual she almost convinces me that there’s some merit to a song that would fall completely flat in the hands of another singer. But, listening to it so soon after an okay ballad, it’s easier to see there’s just nothing here outside of Houston’s vocal. Houston is reaching out for some big notes putting as much force as she can behind every phrase, but it’s just not a great song overall, and nothing she can do can change that.
I retroactively say I Just Can’t Stop Loving You is great, because they’re actually trying for something, rather than just giving the song to someone with a great set of pipes and hoping for the best.