[From Fox 411]
Whitney vs. Mariah: Celebrity Smackdown Looms
It's about to get rough out there in Diva-land. Whitney Houston and Mariah Carey, the two top pop divas who've each had highly-publicized personal problems, are releasing their new records at the same time. Hang on, because it's going to get interesting.
Yesterday I received the news from Whitney's camp that her newest single, "One of Those Days," was the No. 1 most-added record to radio stations last week. These numbers are courtesy of Radio and Records, which monitors this sort of thing.
Based on the high number of stations that added "One of Those Days" to their playlists not how many times they played it, which is a different story Houston hit No. 1 on the overall list and the R&B list.
The folks at Arista are justifiably happy. After the debacle of Houston's last single, "Whatchulookinat," which few stations embraced, it seems there will be an audience for Whitney after all. Her new album, Just Whitney...., which is already available in its entirety on the Internet, hits stores on Nov. 26.
I also know that the Arista kids are thrilled that they leapt ahead of Mariah's single, "Through the Rain," which has made steady but slow progress as the lead track off Carey's new album. That one, called Charmbracelet, hits stores Dec. 5.
There's a bit of intramural rivalry now between Whitney and Mariah, and that's because two high-powered and talented radio promotion guys are involved. Lionel Ridenour, Arista's guy, is guiding Whitney, while Jerry Blair is positioning Mariah.
But wait: For one tense year last year, these two guys worked side-by-side at Arista sharing a job title. They didn't along. Different ways of doing things was the problem, although neither way was right or wrong.
Now, like the Yankees and the Red Sox, the Whitney and Mariah camps have rival dudes working the stations. Things could get ugly, but then again, all that friction could mean hits for both sides. Let the games begin!
PS: Let's not forget that Whitney's single, while excellent, also represents a lot of income for Arista Records president L.A. Reid. He not only runs the record company, but gets a cut of the single since he published the song through his own publishing company. More spins at radio for "One of Those Days" means more Brioni suits for Reid. In the end, everyone wins.
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