Mariah Carey’s 18 Number-One Hits
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Singer Mariah Carey (born March 27, 1970) burst onto the pop charts in 1990, wowing fans and critics alike with a powerful five-octave vocal range and catchy hits that shot to No. 1. During the next two decades, Carey would record a total of 18 songs that reached the top of the charts, more than any other solo performer. In fact, only the Beatles have had more No. 1 hits. Although her last No. 1 hit was in 2007, Mariah Carey continues to record new music and perform live. She’s also branched into acting, having appeared in such films as “The Bachelor,” “The Butler,” and “The Lego Batman Movie.” See if your favorite Mariah Carey song is among this list of her 18 No. 1 hits.
‘Vision of Love’ (1990)
Mariah Carey’s first No. 1 single introduced her trademark melismatic style to pop audiences. Mariah Carey’s co-writer of the song was Ben Margulies. “Vision of Love” stayed at the top of the charts for four weeks and was nominated for four Grammy Awards, including Record of the Year and Song of the Year. Mariah Carey took home the trophy for the third nomination for Best Female Pop Vocal.
‘Love Takes Time’ (1990)
“Love Takes Time” is the second single from Mariah Carey’s self-titled debut album. It was her second hit co-written with Ben Margulies. The song nearly didn’t appear on the album. It was mostly recorded in one day and added at the last minute. “Love Takes Time” spent three weeks at No. 1 on the pop singles chart.
The third No. 1 hit from Mariah Carey’s debut album was also the third co-written with Ben Margulies. “Someday” adds a touch of new jack swing to the sound. It was one of five songs included on a demo tape that singer Brenda K. Starr gave to Capitol Records chief Tommy Mottola, who eventually signed Carey to a recording contract. “Someday” spent two weeks at the top of the pop singles chart.
‘I Don’t Wanna Cry’ (1991)
“I Don’t Wanna Cry” is the fourth No. 1 single from Carey’s debut album. This song was written with veteran R&B producer and songwriter Narada Michael Walden. It spent two weeks at No. 1 on the pop singles chart and tied Mariah Carey with the Jackson 5 for the most consecutive No. 1 singles (four) by a debut artist.
“Emotions” is the title song from Mariah Carey’s second album. David Cole and Robert Clivilles of C&C Music Factory produced and co-wrote the song, giving it a strong dance feel. The result was a record-breaking fifth consecutive No. 1 single. No new artist had ever achieved that feat. It spent three weeks at the top of the pop singles chart and received a Grammy Award nomination for Best Female Pop Vocal.
‘I’ll Be There,’ Featuring Trey Lorenz (1992)
Mariah Carey’s cover of the Jackson 5 classic “I’ll Be There” was a last-minute addition to her “MTV Unplugged” set. The song was performed in a duet with R&B vocalist Trey Lorenz. “I’ll Be There” was nominated for a Grammy Award for Best R&B Duo or Group With Vocal. It spent two weeks at the top of the pop singles chart. In 2009 Mariah Carey and Trey Lorenz performed the song at Michael Jackson’s memorial service.
“Dreamlover” is the lead single from Mariah Carey’s third studio album, “Music Box.” It is built around a sample from the Emotions song “Blind Alley.” The song became Mariah Carey’s biggest hit single to date, spending eight weeks at the top. It brought Mariah Carey another Grammy Award nomination for Best Female Pop Vocal.
The inspirational “Hero” is considered one of Mariah Carey’s signature songs. Originally written for the movie “Hero” with Dustin Hoffman and Geena Davis, it was instead recorded by Carey after music executive Tommy Mottola insisted that she keep it for herself. “Hero” spent four weeks at No. 1 on the pop singles chart and was nominated for a Grammy Award for Best Female Pop Vocal.
For the first single from the album “Daydream,” Mariah Carey used a catchy sample from the Tom Tom Club’s hit “Genius of Love.” “Daydream” became only the second single to debut at No. 1 on the pop singles chart after Michael Jackson’s “You Are Not Alone.” For the sixth year in a row, Mariah Carey received a nomination for Best Female Pop Vocal. “Fantasy” matched “Dreamlover” in spending eight weeks at the top of the pop singles chart.
‘One Sweet Day’ With Boyz II Men (1995)
“One Sweet Day” lays claim to being one of the biggest pop hit singles of all time. It still holds the record for the most weeks (16) spent at the top of the Billboard Hot 100. Mariah Carey teamed up with Boyz II Men for the song, which was inspired by the death of two of Mariah Carey’s close friends in the music business—David Cole of C&C Music Factory and guitarist Steve Clark of Def Leppard. The song received two Grammy Award nominations, including Record of the Year.
‘Always Be My Baby’ (1996)
“Always Be My Baby” is the third No. 1 pop single from “Daydream.” It was co-written and co-produced with Jermaine Dupri and Manuel Seal. After two consecutive singles debuting at No. 1, “Always Be My Baby” “only” debuted at No. 2 but did spend two weeks at the top. It also spent nine nonconsecutive weeks at No. 2, a record in that position for Mariah Carey.
“Honey” is the first single from Mariah Carey’s album “Butterfly.” She collaborated with rap star Puff Daddy, now Diddy, on the song. The accompanying music video was notable for featuring a sexier, more “street” side of Mariah Carey. “Honey” spent three weeks at No. 1 on the pop singles chart and received two Grammy Award nominations for Best R&B Song and Best R&B Female Vocal.
‘My All’ (1998)
The second No. 1 pop single from “Butterfly” is notable for incorporating Latin influences into the sound. Longtime collaborator Walter Afanasieff co-wrote and co-produced the song. The video for the song was shot in black-and-white in Puerto Rico. “My All” spent two weeks at the top of the pop singles chart.
‘Heartbreaker,’ Featuring Jay-Z (1999)
“Heartbreaker” is a No. 1 single from Mariah Carey’s studio album “Rainbow.” It features a collaboration with rap star Jay-Z. The song was originally intended for a Mariah Carey movie project that was never produced. It was the second Mariah Carey song to feature a sample from the Tom Tom Club’s “Genius of Love.” The song spent two weeks at No. 1 on the U.S. pop singles chart. As a result, Mariah Carey surpassed the Beatles for the most weeks spent at No. 1 on the pop singles chart.
‘Thank God I Found You,’ Featuring Joe and 98 Degrees (2000)
“Thank God I Found You” is the second No. 1 pop single from “Rainbow.” It features vocals from R&B singer Joe as well as the boy band 98 Degrees. The song only spent one week at the top of the chart, but it was nominated for a Grammy Award for Best Pop Collaboration With Vocals.
‘We Belong Together’ (2005)
“We Belong Together” is the second single from Mariah Carey’s comeback album, “The Emancipation of Mimi.” It was co-produced with favorite past collaborators Jermaine Dupri and Manuel Seal. Fans and critics alike received the song with great celebration. It became her first No. 1 pop single in five years and spent 14 weeks at the top of the chart. Mariah Carey also took home two Grammy Awards for Best R&B Song and Best Female R&B Vocal.
‘Don’t Forget About Us’ (2005)
“Don’t Forget About Us” is the second No. 1 single from “The Emancipation of Mimi.” Some criticized the song for being too similar to “We Belong Together,” but fans didn’t seem to mind. The song spent two weeks at the top of the pop singles chart.