With her unique talent and signature vocal abilities, Mariah Carey commanded the world’s attention when she made her musical debut in the early nineties. In less than a decade, Mariah Carey emerged as one of the most popular and widely acclaimed talents in music. As a singer and songwriter, Carey has been recognized with the most prestigious accolades in the industry including two Grammy Awards, eight American Music Awards, Billboard’s “Artist of the Decade” Award and the World Music Award for “World’s Best Selling Female Artist of the Millennium” to name a few. As the best-selling female performer of all time, Mariah Carey has continuously raised the bar and set the standard of excellence within the music industry worldwide.
With a mother who shared both talent and a love of music, Carey was destined for a life of song having been named after “They Call the Wind Mariah” a melody from a popular Lerner and Loewe musical. From an early age, Carey demonstrated extraordinary musical abilities. She started singing at the tender age of four and her innate talent quickly progressed. While attending middle school, Carey began honing her songwriting skills and upon high school graduation she immediately left for New York City to pursue a lifetime ambition – her dream of a musical career.
From the beginning, Carey’s luminous talent quickly distinguished her in New York and her vocals were in demand by a variety of artists. Her major break came while singing backup for Brenda K. Starr, who gave Mariah’s demo tape to then Sony Music Entertainment Chief Tommy Mottola. Soon afterwards, Mottola signed Mariah to her first recording contract with Columbia Records.
With a fresh-face and angelic allure Mariah exploded on the scene with a signature style that displayed a vocal intensity that had never been seen before. Released in 1990, Carey’s self-titled debut was an immense hit, firmly establishing her as one of the most talented artists in the industry. The album which spawned an extraordinary four #1 singles: “Vision of Love,” “Love Takes Time,” “Someday,” and “I Don’t Wanna Cry,” led to two Grammy Awards for Best New Artist and Best Female Vocalist. Carey continued her success with a series of singles from Emotions and MTV Unplugged albums that consistently placed her at the top of the charts.
With the 1993 release of Music Box, which included the chart-topping hit singles “Dreamlover” and “Hero,” Carey produced her most commercially successful album to date going an astounding ten-times platinum. Carey soon hit yet another career milestone with the release of her first holiday album Merry Christmas, which contained the instant classic “All I Want for Christmas is You.” Over the next two years, Carey continued her relentless chart domination with the album Daydream (1995). Daydream’s “Fantasy” single debuted at number one, making Mariah the second artist in history and the first female performer to accomplish that feat. The album’s other single, “One Sweet Day” (recorded with Boyz II Men), stayed at the top of the charts for a mind-blowing 16 weeks. Carey followed with the Hip-Hop and R&B; infused Butterfly which introduced a new chapter in Mariah’s career teaming her with the hottest names in the music business such as Sean Combs and Missy Elliott.
A true testament to her longevity, Carey released #1’s, a compilation of her chart-topping hits in 1998. The album also included a new song, “When You Believe” (from the film “The Prince of Egypt”), a duet with Whitney Houston, pairing two of the most successful female recording artists in Pop history. Rainbow, with its chart-topping hit “Heartbreaker,” followed in 1999 with startling success.
Always at the top of her game, the ever-thriving Carey sparked the interest of the Universal Music Group’s Island Def Jam Records who in May 2002 signed her to an exclusive recording contract. Later that year, Carey made her Island Def Jam debut with the release of the multi-platinum Charmbracelet.
After more than a decade of hits that include the staggering success of 15 #1 singles, Carey will release her most revealing album to date, The Emancipation of Mimi, in April 2005. Entirely written and co-produced by the gifted Carey, her tenth studio album is an intimate portrayal of both the challenges and successes that she experienced during her rise to unparalleled fame. Carey explains the inspiration behind her new album, “With this album, I am embracing my independence and celebrating the person that I have become. Over the years, I have evolved into a better person and an even better artist. For the first time in my life, I am proud and unafraid to be who I really am, and that’s what the music of this album and its title reflect. By naming my album The Emancipation of Mimi and referencing ‘Mimi’ a nickname only used by those closest to me, I am inviting my fans into my life.”
A brilliant artist who has co-written every song on each of her albums since 1990, Mariah Carey has consistently shown her willingness to express herself both as a remarkable vocalist and an acclaimed songwriter. The Emancipation of Mimi offers more than a glimpse into Mariah’s world featuring tunes like the heartfelt “Circles” and “Fly Like a Bird,” with their positive messages of affirmation and hope. While being honest and vulnerable in expressing her emotions through songs like “I Wish You Knew” and “Joyride,” Mariah leaves no doubt that she is a woman who speaks her mind. The infectious, edgy “It’s Like That,” co-produced by Jermaine Dupri is the album’s first hit single and a definitive statement of where Mariah stands at this point in her life, and is her fastest climbing single in five years.
Mariah and executive producer, Antonio “L.A.” Reid (Island Def Jam Music Group Chairman), approached the creation of The Emancipation of Mimi in a very specific way delivering ballads like “We Belong Together” (which pays homage to the Bobby Womack classic “If You Think You’re Lonely Now”) that her fans have come to expect while evoking a new sound that will surely broaden her appeal and capture an entirely new audience.
The Emancipation of Mimi marks “the return of the voice.” As an artist who has paved the way for a host of emerging talent throughout the years, Mariah is set once again to redefine the heights of musical success with her incomparable talent and timeless appeal. With a refined and sophisticated new look indicative of her artistic evolution, she is poised to conquer new territory. Consistently evolving musically, personally, and creatively Mariah will re-assert her claim as the best-selling female performer of all time with The Emancipation of Mimi. As an artist revered worldwide, her boundless talent and success is unmatched across the globe.
Apart from her musical achievements, Mariah Carey’s depth of person stems from her love and support of children in need; evident through her continuous involvement in a host of charities dedicated to ensuring their happiness and well being. Mariah is devoted to such charities as The Make-A-Wish Foundation, The Fresh Air Fund, Save the Music, and The National Adoption Center to name a few. With an unwavering effort through appearances, concerts, and donations to these organizations, Mariah has raised millions of dollars. Her generous involvement and on-going support of the Fresh Air Fund resulted in Camp Mariah, the fund’s first camp named in honor of an individual. Always willing to offer her “best” self to others, Mariah has not only established herself as a talented artist, but also as a sincere kind-hearted individual worthy of the world’s acclaim.
- Bio of Mariah Carey courtesy Island Records
News, Notes and Reviews
Album Review – The Emancipation of Mimi debut at #1 after posting impressive first week sales of nearly 404,000. Being ranked #1 is nothing new to Mariah, after all she is one of the biggest selling female artists in music history, and she ranks 2nd all time to Elvis for the most culmulative weeks with a number one single (61).
The Emancipation of Mimi boasts top-notch talent like Snoop Dogg, Jermaine Dupri, Nelly, Fatman Scoop, Pharell Williams, and Twista, to name a few. Songs like “Its Like That Yall”, “Say Something”, “To the Floor” and “Get Your Number” (produced by the Neptunes) give the album a unique hip hop vibe.
On the softer side, songs like, “Mine Again”, “Shake It Off”, and “We Belong Together” are good tracks reminiscent of Mariah’s earlier years…
1990: “Mariah Carey”
1993: “Music Box”
1994: “Merry Christmas”
2005: “The Emancipation of Mimi”