Now I understand to hold you I must open my hand and watch you rise – Mariah Carey
It was April 3 2008- – This week on the Billboard charts, Mariah Carey and Madonna both nudged past Elvis Presley for historical standings on the singles chart. Decadent Divas is now getting down to the true 20th century divas.. Welcome the likes of Carey, Houston, Dion and Madonna.. plus the Godmother of them all – who glues them all together .
In a week busy with new albums, the all-male Day26 reached No. 1 with its self-titled debut, selling 190,000 copies, Nielsen SoundScan reported, bumping Danity Kane — the all-female ”Making the Band” group that topped last week’s chart — to No. 4, with 89,000. (Both were released by Bad Boy/Atlantic.) Panic at the Disco’s ”Pretty. Odd.” (Fueled by Ramen/Atlantic) moved 139,000 to reach No. 2. Counting Crows’ ”Saturday Nights & Sunday Mornings” (Geffen) is No. 3 with 106,000, and the Raconteurs sold 42,000 copies of ”Consolers of the Lonely” (Third Man/Warner Brothers) for No. 7. … Ms. Carey’s ”Touch My Body” becomes her 18th No. 1 single; only the Beatles have more, with 20. Madonna’s new ”4 Minutes,” at No. 3, becomes her 37th single in the Top 10, beating Presley’s record for the most Top 10 songs
Mariah Carey is known for her voice, of course: she can hit high notes that barely sound human, and few singers soar around the octaves as gracefully as she does. Her secret weapon may be her versatility: Ms. Carey also knows how to make a hip-hop hit by holding back and letting the beat shine. One of the things that make her music appealing — and sometimes infuriating — is her commitment to frivolity. She has a whim of iron, an almost perverse attraction to sentimentality in its most visible forms. Even hardcore fans probably have trouble taking some of her album titles seriously: ”Butterfly,” ”Rainbow,” ”Glitter,” ”Charmbracelet.” The imagery doesn’t seem to fit her music, which can be sublime, or her voice, which is invariably astonishing, or her approach to her career, which is decidedly unsentimental.
The best-selling female performer of the 1990s, Mariah Carey rose to superstardom on the strength of her stunning five-octave voice; an elastic talent who moved easily from glossy ballads to hip-hop-inspired dance-pop, she earned frequent comparison to rivals Whitney Houston and Celine Dion, but did them both one better by composing all of her own material. Mariah’s gift just to hear things in the air and to start developing songs out of them was essential to her huge stardom.
Born in Long Island, NY, on March 27, 1970, Carey moved to New York City at the age of 17 — just one day after graduating high school — to pursue a music career; there she befriended keyboardist Ben Margulies, with whom she began writing songs. Although she was exposed to opera while growing up, Ms. Carey said she was never drawn to it, preferring ”freer music.” Her influences included her mother’s Billie Holiday records and her brother and sister’s Al Green, Gladys Knight and Stevie Wonder albums.
Mariah Carey grew up in a broken home, poor and with no friends. Singing was her salvation. One day, at a music industry party, another musician slips executive Tommy Mottola a demo tape of Mariah. In the limo on his way home Mottola is bored, so he listens to the tape. Mariah’s voice is like liquid gold. He goes back to look for her. But just like in the Cinderella story, she has slipped away. Mottola follows the tracks of Carey’s slipper and immediately signs her on. In 1990, at 21, she becomes an instant star. Her debut album sells more than seven million copies in the U.S. And she ends up marrying Mottola, her Prince Charming
Following her marriage to Mottola in 1993, a series of hit records established her position as Columbia’s highest-selling act. According to Billboard magazine, she was the most successful artist of the 1990s in the United States. Following her separation from Mottola in 1997, Carey introduced elements of hip hop into her album work, to much initial success, but her popularity was in decline when she left Columbia in 2001. She signed to Virgin Records but was paid to leave the label the following year after a highly publicized physical and emotional breakdown, as well as the poor reception given to Glitter, her film and soundtrack project .