In an interview broadcast Monday with Oprah Winfrey, Michael Houston, older brother of late singer and Newark native Whitney Houston, admits he introduced her to hard drugs as her professional career took off in the 1980s.
Speaking on the OWN Network’s “ Oprah’s Next Chapter,” Michael Houston, who appeared on the show with his mother Cissy, also dispelled the rumor that it was her husband Bobby Brown who first encouraged Whitney to try cocaine.
“I would say yeah, we did everything together,” Michael Houston replied when Winfrey asked whether he was responsible.
“I’m living but I’m not alive without her,” Houston also said.
The interview comes less than two weeks before the anniversary of Houston’s death Feb. 11, 2012 in Beverly Hills. Cocaine was later found to be a contributing factor, the Los Angeles County coroner later concluded.
Born in Newark, NJ, Houston, 48 at the time of her death, first began singing publicly in the choir at the city’s New Hope Baptist Church as a child. She later rose to international fame with hits like “The Greatest Love of All,” “I Will Always Love You,” “I Wanna Dance with Somebody” and “How Will I Know?”