Mariah Carey
Feb 10 2024

#RockHall2024 Nominee


The indisputable Songbird Supreme. Everything Mariah Carey touches turns to gold. With her five-octave vocal range and revolutionary riffs and runs, her voice is incomparable. As a singer, songwriter, performer, and record producer, her dynamic career trajectory has had an enormous impact on the pop music landscape, generating nineteen Number One hits, second only to the Beatles.


Carey’s rise to stardom was the stuff of record industry fairytale. Raised in a home plagued by chaos, she developed her whisper-singing as self-soothing lullaby. At 17, she moved to New York City, eventually landing a pivotal role as a back-up singer. In a move that foreshadowed the take-charge professionalism of her career, she gave her demo to CBS Records President Tommy Mottola at an industry party and was fast-tracked as a “priority artist.”


Carey’s self-titled 1990 debut, the “album that launched a million runs,” featured four Number One singles, cementing a chart-topping tradition that continued throughout her career. That year, she won the Grammy for Best New Artist, and the single “Vision of Love” won Best Female Pop Vocal Performance. Throughout the 1990s, Carey took more creative control with each album. As her creative relationship with Mottola dissolved, Carey drew inspiration from the growing success of hip-hop, working with Ol’ Dirty Bastard on the “Fantasy” remix – a move that helped spark the R&B/hip-hop marriage that dominated the charts through the 2000s. The Emancipation of Mimi was not only the best-selling album of 2005, but proved to be such a creative gamechanger that some critics considered it her “comeback album.”


Her accomplishments go well beyond record sales and charts. She co-founded Camp Mariah, where inner-city children explore creative interests. Her well-received role in the 2009 film Precious solidified her versatility. Melismatic singers like Beyoncé and Christina Aguilera are inspired by Carey’s vocal prowess, and her legacy continues to shine – the 1994 holiday hit “All I Want for Christmas Is You” remains one of the best-selling singles of all time. Mariah Carey’s high notes will reverberate for generations.



The indisputable Songbird Supreme

Selected discography:
“Vision of Love,” “Someday,” Mariah Carey (1990) • “Emotions,” “Make It Happen,” Emotions (1991) • “I’ll Be There” (with Trey Lorenz), MTV Unplugged EP (1992) • “Hero,” “Without You,” Music Box (1993) • “One Sweet Day” (with Boyz II Men), “Always Be My Baby,” Daydream (1995) • “Fantasy” (Bad Boy with O.D.B.) (1995) • “Honey,” Butterfly (1997) • The Emancipation of Mimi (2005) • “Big Energy (Remix)” (Latto and Mariah Carey featuring DJ Khaled) (2022)

Nominee: Mariah Carey