Dead at 48
Our sources tell us a member of Whitney's entourage found her in her 4th-floor room at the Beverly Hilton hotel ... and called hotel security -- who then dialed 911. When paramedics arrived Houston was found unresponsive.
We're told police arrived to the scene within minutes and fire was already there on an unrelated call. According to our sources, paramedics performed CPR but it did not work and she was pronounced dead at 3:55 PM.
Our sources say there were no obvious signs of foul play, but BH PD detectives have begun a full investigation. We're told she was ID'ed by family and friends.
L.A. County Coroner Ed Winter told our photog at 7:09 PM that it is too early in the investigation to tell what happened (see below).
The singer famously battled drug addiction for years (see related links below).
Houston was seen out in Hollywood Thursday night for a Grammy party ... and she did not look well (below). She even briefly took the mic and performed a song while she was there -- what would become her last performance. See the video here.
Houston won two Emmy Awards, six Grammy Awards, 30 Billboard Music Awards, 22 American Music Awards during her record-breaking career. Her album "Whitney" was the first female album to ever debut at #1 on the Billboard Charts. She has sold 200 million albums worldwide.
Houston had one child, Bobbi Kristina, with husband Bobby Brown. Houston and Brown were married from 1992-2007.
Sources tell TMZ, Whitney Houston "partied heavily" last night at the Beverly HIlton hotel where she was staying, drinking and chatting loudly with friends in the bar -- but Cissy Houston and Dionne Warwick claim the singer sounded fine just hours before her death.
We're told Bobby Brown is distraught over Whitney's death -- going "in and out of crying fits." His band New Edition tells us, they are "shocked and saddened."
Clive Davis' pre-Grammy party -- which Whitney was supposed to open -- is going on as scheduled this evening, though Clive will not be in attendance.
Law enforcement sources tell TMZ, police are currently seeking a search warrant to investigate the hotel room where Whitney was found dead. One item they'll be looking out for -- drugs.