Mariah Carey is a singer, songwriter, record producer, actress, and philanthropist. She made her recording debut in 1990 under the guidance of Columbia Records executive Tommy Mottola, and released her self-titled debut studio album, Mariah Carey. The album went multi-platinum and spawned four consecutive number one singles on the U.S. Billboard Hot 100 chart.
Following Mariah Carey’s marriage to Mottola in 1993, a series of hit records, including Emotions (1991), Music Box (1993) and Merry Christmas (1994), established her position as Columbia’s highest-selling act. Daydream (1995), made music history when the second single, “One Sweet Day” a duet with Boyz II Men, spent a record sixteen weeks on top of the Billboard Hot 100, and remains the longest-running number-one song in U.S. chart history. During the recording of the album, Mariah Carey began to deviate from her R&B and pop beginnings, and slowly traversed into hip hop. After her separation from Mottola, this musical change was evident with the release of Butterfly (1997).
Mariah Carey left Columbia in 2000, and signed a record-breaking $100 million recording contract with Virgin Records. Carey ventured into film with Glitter (2001). Before the film’s release she suffered a physical and emotional breakdown and was hospitalized for severe exhaustion. Following the film’s poor reception, she was bought out of her recording contract for $50 million, which led to a decline in her career.
Mariah Carey signed a multi-million dollar contract deal with Island Records in 2002, and after an unsuccessful period, returned to the top of music charts with The Emancipation of Mimi (2005). Its second single “We Belong Together” became her most successful single of the 2000s, and was later named “Song of the Decade” by Billboard. Carey once again ventured into film, and starred in Precious: Based on the Novel “Push” by Sapphire (2009). Her role in the film was well-received, and she was awarded the “Breakthrough Performance Award” at the Palm Springs International Film Festival, and Black Reel and NAACP Image Award nominations.
In a career spanning over two decades, Mariah Carey has sold more than 200 million records worldwide, making her one of the best-selling music artists of all time. In 1998, she was honored as the world’s best-selling recording artist of the 1990s at the World Music Awards. Carey was also named the best-selling female artist of the millennium in 2000. According to the Recording Industry Association of America, she is the third best-selling female artist in the United States, with 63.5 million certified albums. With the release of “Touch My Body” (2008), Mariah Carey gained her eighteenth number one single in the United States, more than any other solo artist.
In 2012, Mariah Carey was ranked second on VH1’s list of the “100 Greatest Women in Music”. Aside from her commercial accomplishments, Carey has won five Grammy Awards, 17 World Music Awards, 11 American Music Awards, and 31 Billboard Music Awards. Referred to as the “songbird supreme” by the Guinness World Records, she is famed for her five-octave vocal range, power, melismatic style and signature use of the whistle register.
How Mariah Carey Made Her Money – Singer
Estimated Net Worth: $500 Million
Birthday: March 27, 1970
[image via David Shankbone]