Leona Lewis' Whitney thrill
Feb 12, 2008, 7:35 GMT
02/09/2008 - Leona Lewis - 2008 Clive Davis Pre-GRAMMY Party - Arivals - The Beverly Hilton Hotel - Beverly Hills, CA USA © Chris Hatcher / PR Photos
Leona Lewis was left "overwhelmed" when Whitney Houston said she was a "baby version" of herself.
The 'Bleeding Love' singer met her "all-time musical hero" at producer Clive Davis' Annual Grammy Party in Los Angeles last weekend, but could barely speak when she was introduced to her idol.
She said: "It was amazing, I got to meet my all-time musical hero Whitney Houston - who looked so incredible. Clive introduced us. I don't think I managed to say much though, I was overwhelmed!
"I was told afterwards that when I performed she had said to a friend at the record label, 'My God, she's a baby me!' Wow - what a huge compliment!"
Leona sang her hit single 'Bleeding Love' and covered 'The First Time Ever I Saw Your Face' in front of a star-studded audience, which included Janet Jackson, Alicia Keys and Usher.
The British star admits she found the whole experience "surreal".
She said: "It's been almost surreal and feels just so wonderful that I performed in front of so many people I admire - especially that Whitney even knows who I am and said that about me when I've been such a fan all these years!"
Clive - who chose Leona as his 'Special New Artist' guest, an honour previously bestowed upon Maroon 5 and Jennifer Hudson - said the 22-year-old star was the perfect choice to entertain his A-list guests.
He said: "Leona's range, her feel for music - it's clear she has the passion for music. A year ago, right here, we gathered the best writers and producers of the world. We had her sing in a living room of a suite and she floored them. It led to getting incredible material which has made up her album."
(C) BANG Media International