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In 1995, ‘Exhale (Shoop Shoop)’ Was Released As Lead Single From ‘Waiting To Exhale’

Whitney Houston - Exhale (Shoop Shoop) single front cover

November 7, 1995 (28 years ago today) – The midtempo “Exhale (Shoop Shoop)” was released as the lead single from the soundtrack to Whitney’s second feature film, Waiting To Exhale. The song, written and produced by Kenneth “Babyface” Edmonds, was another historic smash for Whitney as it became just the third single in music history to debut at #1 on the Billboard Hot 100 and the first single from a soundtrack to accomplish this feat. It also debuted at #1 on the Billboard Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs chart, where it would stay for eight weeks, her second-longest running #1 on that chart. The song was her 11th and final #1 hit on the Billboard Hot 100. It later won a GRAMMY for Best R&B Song. The music video was directed by Forest Whitaker, who also directed the film.

Babyface said about “Exhale (Shoop Shoop)”: “When Whitney first heard the song, she figured I’d lost it — I couldn’t come up with words anymore. And, actually she’s right. I couldn’t think of anything for that particular part. It felt like it should groove there. But I knew it couldn’t groove without any vocals, so I started humming along with it and that’s what happened. The ‘shoops’ came. But they felt so good, I thought ‘Why not?’ It doesn’t have to mean anything.”

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