The Mariah Carey Discography Rate Pt.1 • FINISHED

The first one is probably One Sweet Day, isn’t it?

Well, let's see . . .


Although the sun will never shine the same
I'll always look to a brighter day
Lord, I know when I lay me down to sleep
You will always listen as I pray


"One Sweet Day"

with Boyz II Men

Score: 8.364
High scores: 10×21 (@Music Is Life, @WhatKindOfKylie?, @EricG1990, @tylerc904, @AdzBrown, @ohaimanabu, @Daniel_O, @Pinky25, @RUNAWAY, @Robsolete, @ysev, @japanbonustrack, @lalaclairi_, @Slice of Life, @Lost In Japan., @LeBratt, @Oleander, @Blond, @Remorque, @Sail On, @Oceandrive), 9.1×1 (@mokitsu), 9×5 (@P'NutButter, @Maria, @Sprockrooster, @Cowboystyle, @If You Go)
Low scores: 2×1 (@Ana Raquel), 4×1 (@DominoDancing), 5×1 (@CasuallyCrazed)
My score: 8.75

5 ballots: #26, 8.95 avg.
10 ballots: #41, 8.155 avg.
15 ballots: #29, 8.570 avg.
20 ballots: #25 (tied), 8.578 avg.
25 ballots: #29, 8.262 avg.
30 ballots: #24, 8.345 avg.
35 ballots: #22, 8.396 avg.
40 ballots: #21, 8.446 avg.
45 ballots: #24, 8.336 avg.
50 ballots: #26, 8.254 avg.
55 ballots: #22, 8.376 avg.
60 ballots: #22, 8.337 avg.
61 ballots: #22, 8.364 avg.

"One Sweet Day" was released as the second single from "Daydream" on November 14, 1995. Its lyrics were written by Mariah and Boyz II Men (Michael McCary, Nathan Morris, Wanya Morris, and Shawn Stockman) and it was composed, arranged, and produced by Mariah and Walter Afanasieff. The single was hugely successful worldwide and peaked in the top ten in most territories it was released, including the US (#1 for a record-breaking 16 weeks; a record it held for 24 years), Canada (#1), New Zealand (#1), Australia (#2), the Netherlands (#2), Ireland (#4), Denmark (#5), France (#5), Norway (#6), the UK (#6), Sweden (#7), and Belgium (#8), and has sold 3.26 million physical copies worldwide (2.335 million of which were sold in the US alone). The song's huge success in the US led to it winning Billboard's Song Of The Decade Award for the '90s - a feat she would repeat by winning the same award again in the '00s... but we'll get to that in part two of the rate.

Shortly after Mariah's friend and frequent collaborator, David Cole of C+C Music Factory, passed away from complications of spinal meningitis brought on by AIDS in January 1995, she began working on a song to pay tribute to him, as well as other friends and family members who had passed away. She had written the song's basic melody and finished the chorus, then put the song on hold as she decided it would work better as a duet: "I wrote the initial idea for 'One Sweet Day' with Walter, and I had the chorus... and I stopped and said, 'I really wanna do this with Boyz II Men,' because... obviously I'm a big fan of theirs and I just thought that the work was crying out for them, the vocals that they do, so I put it away and said, 'Who knows if this could ever happen, but I just don't wanna finish this song because I want it to be our song if we ever do it together'."

Due to their busy schedules, Mariah and Boyz II Men were only able to get together to complete and record the song as well as film the music video over the course of one day. Once Mariah played the group what she had been working on they, were shocked; Nate Morris had already begun working on a track with a similar theme in dedication to the group's road manager who had also recently passed away. Mariah recalls " It had basically the same lyrics and fitted over the same chord changes. It was really, really weird. We finished the song right then and there. We were all kinda flipped about it ourselves. Fate had a lot to do with that". A version of the track incorporating Nate's original melody, titled Chucky's Remix, was released as a b-side on some editions of the single.

I typically prefer Mariah's darker, more somber ballads to the more saccharine stuff like this and "Hero", etc. but I simply can't deny how strong the melodies on display here are. I find it a little weird that this was huge in the '90s, but has no real legacy today aside from its chart success today. I occasionally hear other '90s tracks ("Always Be My Baby" and "Fantasy (feat. O.D.B.)" mostly) played on the radio here still, but I never hear this - or even see it get much discussion nowadays. I guess it's a good thing this one huge song hasn't eclipsed the rest of her whole non-holiday career, but it's still a little odd to me. Not that I'm complaining ddd.​

@Music Is Life (10) — "The first ballad of the album, an iconic single and duet with Boyz II Men, it makes sense why this was number one for so long. It's got great lyrics, great vocals, great production and two of the biggest stars at the time. A great fucking song."

@WhatKindOfKylie? (10) — "Outstanding. Masterpiece. Triumph. Whatever you wanna call it, no words would be a good job to sum up how extraordinary this song is. It's Mariah Carey at her creative and chimerical peak and easily her finest collaboration ever too. Was the long running #1 in America for a reason, and it took 20 years for it to be tied for a good reason as well. Although, the less said about that so called song the better..."

@Pinky25 (10) — "Just an absolutely gorgeous song from lyrics to vocals."

@ysev (10) — "A CHORUS if I ever heard one!"

@Blond (10) — "This didn't fair too well in the 90s Number Ones rate, and Lil Nas X just snatched its crown in the record books, but I think this is a great song that deserves to do well here. It certainly straddles the cheesy line, but it seems sincere and the vocals are absolutely sickening."

@Oceandrive (10) — "Whilst I am slightly sad at the record being broke here Mariah will always have something to be very proud of with this song. Even if power ballads aren't really your thing there is at least one lyric or chord progression here that will trigger an emotional response on some level."

@mokitsu (9.1) — "Somehow this always gets my atheist-self emotional and belting along."

@Sprockrooster (9) — "Not my pick of a song for such a massive record from this queen, that she might have lost when the reveal of this song is lost. I find the chorus about too cheesy, but damn those verses. Mimi is holding back her vocals and sounds more powerful than ever."

@Womanizer (8.8) — "Chorus drags a little but honestly so powerful."

@godspeed (8.5) — "What sums up 'mid-90s R&B' better than 'One Sweet Day'? I honestly don't know. If that's not the first song you think of when I say 'legendary collaboration,' I don't know what's wrong with you."

@pop3blow2 (8.3) — "Oh, One Sweet Day. Not nearly as good as its musical cousin, The Wind. Parts of the melody here were undeniable, but at any times it because less harmonizing between the vocal forces of their day & more about oversinging. I liked this a bit at the time, but did get tired of it... which was the first time that happened with a Mariah song. Don't really come back to it now. Its chart run was impressive, though, back in the day."

@bonnieetclyde (8) — "lovely vocal arrangement, although Boyz II Men sound like they are playing catch up to Mariah's effortless vocal delivery. That chorus is so strong though."

@Imagineitwasus (8) — "Potent."

@nikkysan (8) — "It is overly saccharine but the vocal harmonies and melodies are still so beautiful so I can't be mad at it. I wonder if this will still have its Billboard Hot 100 record by the time this rate starts..."

@londonrain (8) — "Okay, I stan classic Boyz II Men and all, but I'm always surprised that THIS, of all songs, was the record-breaker. Not Fantasy? Not Always Be My Baby? It's a cute girl and I love every overblown run, but a 10 it is not."

@Veeis (8) — "It should be recognised more by general public. I adore her vocals in it and it blends nicely with Boyz II Men voices."

@Jimmyandroid (7) — "I've never really got One Sweet Day. I don't dislike it but am never reaching to put it on."

@evilsin (7) — "I know this is a record-breaking track, but it never really clicked with me. Although I do recognize it's pretty nice."

@Seventeen Days (6.5) — "Look, I'm not totally heartless; this is a beautiful tribute to the loss of a loved one, and there's a reason it holds the record for the most weeks at #1 on Billboard to this day. But... this song was EVERY. SINGLE. PLACE. back in the day, and it got to be grating after a while. Don't worry though, Mariah - I can't stand 'Uptown Funk' or 'Despacito' for the same reason, so it's not just you."

@abael (6) — "Is it just me or does Mariah overdo things in duets? As if she feels it's a competition."

@DominoDancing (4) — "Urghs. Sappy in the absolute worst way. I applaud them for writing a song inspired by the AIDS epidemic and people they lost, but I honestly believe that ultra-generic lines like 'you're shining down on me from heaven' are not up to scratch for a topic like this. I don't even like the key change."

@Ana Raquel (2) — "It's kinda surreal how it topped the charts for several weeks because... it's awful? one of her most tedious songs."​

If that second one is Prisoner I will be throwing hands in these streets.

(If it’s Fourth Of July - which seems like a more likely candidate - then @abael had better start running.)

@londonrain correctly guessed our first elimination today, but was he able to guess the second cut as well?

Yes, it's one of his two guesses . . .

But are we cutting "Prisoner" or "Fourth Of July"?



So starry eyed on the flowery hillside
Breathless and fervid amid the dandelions
As it swept over me like the wind through the trees
I felt you sigh with a sweet intensity


"Fourth Of July"

Score: 8.385
High scores: 11×2 (@The Hot Rock, @ysev), 10×13 (@Music Is Life, @WhatKindOfKylie?, @tylerc904, @Imagineitwasus, @Pinky25, @RUNAWAY, @nikkysan, @Slice of Life, @Love Deluxe, @BreatheBox, @PayMe, @codecat, @Island), 9.5×2 (@japanbonustrack, @Oceandrive), 9.25×1 (@vague)
Low scores: 4×2 (@Daniel_O, @abael), 5×1 (@DominoDancing), 6×4 (@playboy69, @Maria, @Sprockrooster, @londonrain)
My score: 9.25

5 ballots: #34 (tied), 8.65 avg.
10 ballots: #37 (tied), 8.425 avg.
15 ballots: #31, 8.517 avg.
20 ballots: #37, 8.138 avg.
25 ballots: #33 (tied), 8.150 avg.
30 ballots: #32, 8.208 avg.
35 ballots: #23, 8.321 avg.
40 ballots: #26, 8.294 avg.
45 ballots: #25, 8.328 avg.
50 ballots: #24, 8.315 avg.
55 ballots: #25, 8.309 avg.
60 ballots: #20, 8.367 avg.
61 ballots: #21, 8.385 avg.

"Fourth Of July" is the fifth track from Mariah's sixth studio album, "Butterfly". Its lyrics were written solely by Mariah and it was composed, arranged, and produced by Mariah and Walter Afanasieff.

The leaked backing vocal stems must be what heaven sounds like tbh. Honestly, this is such a gorgeous song with some of her most evocative lyrics ever; I truly feel like I'm experiencing what she's singing about here. I'm a little sad this dropped out of the top 20 at the literal last minute, but I'm still happy so many of us love it and gave it 9+ scores.​

@The Hot Rock (11) — "I have decided to ascend."

@ysev (11) — "I knew this was going to be my 11 right from the start. Hands down my favorite Mariah song and confidently within my Top 10 songs of all time.

The music, the lyrics, the vocals... everything. I consider Fourth of July to be Butterfly's center piece, despite neither being a single nor the title track.

Mariah beautifully uses America's Independence Day as a metaphor for her own emancipation. While it's obviously a love song, I always viewed the love story told in the song as a story between herself and her freshly attained autonomy rather than a lover. She sings in a very nuanced way about her journey by having three lyrically different choruses and a climactic bridge.

During the first chorus she's 'trembling but [wants] to stay', hence she's unsure and not confident yet. During the second chorus she becomes sure and lays in an 'intimate daze' with her newfound freedom before a storm arrives during the bridge. Then, during the last chorus she parts ways on the fourth of July, as the storm signified that declaring your own independence won't be as easy and blissful as during the second chorus. It's absolutely crazy how she managed to encompass all three stages of initial fear, the following high of her liberation and lastly the sober realization that her ongoing path won't be as easy as assumed. I mean... it's truly a lyrical masterpiece and in good old Mariah fashion, it's as universal as such a personal song possibly could be.

When it comes to the sound, Fourth of July is one of MC's jazziest and most understated offerings to date. It's reminiscent of Underneath the Stars but compared to it Fourth of July sounds almost experimental and left - field. I swear I could write an entire thesis about this song dddd. I am honestly not exaggerating when I say that Mariah truly mastered the art of music on this one!" (this is such an interesting and thoughtful take on the song that would have never even crossed my mind)

@Music Is Life (10) — "Kinda love this. Like a lot. I'm not really sure why but I love everything about this."

@WhatKindOfKylie? (10) — "Every day needs to the 4th July, when you have a soundtrack to it as wonderful as this!! The perfect follow up to Underneath The Stars, and just a breathtaking."

@tylerc904 (10) — "A total sequel to Underneath the Stars, and nearly as brilliant."

@Imagineitwasus (10) — "I hesitated giving this my 11. This song is the actual tapestry of her psyche. It's a true musical testament, an ars(e) poetica."

@Pinky25 (10) — "The more romantic and sentimental version of The Roof."

@godspeed (9) — "Once you have gone through the emotional storm that is 'The Roof,' 'Fourth Of July' appears like such a peaceful and healing moment. This song is actually not that different from the previous one on the Butterfly tracklisting: it captures a moment of romance and creates a nostalgic, sensual and romantic mood. The subtle production is perfect and stunning and Mariah's performance here is one of her absolute best."

@pop3blow2 (8.5) — "Mariah serving storytelling bops with 'The Roof' & 'Fourth Of July'. Those two songs were always connected to me. There's a confessional nature to the songs I appreciate, even if neither are really what I consider faves."

@Seventeen Days (8) — "This song always seemed like the twin song to 'Underneath the Stars', with the same 70s AM radio vibe and similar lyrics about a one-time fling. Although it never appealed to me as much as the former, it's still a gorgeous track."

@Veeis (8) — "Over the years I grew up to appreciate this song more, her vocals again are amazing here."

@Jimmyandroid (7.5) — "Underneath The Stars does this vibe better. But worth the rehash for the use of 'fervid' showing that Mariah is the most literate writer in the game."

@bonnieetclyde (6.5) — "this one sort of washes over me, sorry."

@Sprockrooster (6) — "From her more jazzy tracks this seems to be one of the weaker ones."

@DominoDancing (5) — "Sweet harmonies. Otherwise a pretty unremarkable slow jam."

@abael (4) — "The charm of simply following where Mariah takes you vocally has lost its luster by this point. Composition has to be more structured when you can't sell it on voice alone." (girl.... what)



"Mariah Carey"

01 Vision Of Love
02 There's Got To Be A Way
03 I Don't Wanna Cry
04 Someday
05 Vanishing
06 All In Your Mind
07 Alone In Love
08 You Need Me
09 Sent From Up Above
10 Prisoner
11 Love Takes Time



01 Emotions
02 And You Don't Remember
03 Can't Let Go
04 Make It Happen
05 If It's Over
06 You're So Cold
07 So Blessed
08 To Be Around You
09 Till The End Of Time
10 The Wind


"MTV Unplugged"

01 I'll Be There (feat. Trey Lorenz)


"Music Box"

01 Dreamlover
02 Hero
03 Anytime You Need A Friend
04 Music Box
05 Now That I Know
06 Never Forget You
07 Without You
08 Just To Hold You Once Again
09 I've Been Thinking About You
10 All I've Ever Wanted


"Merry Christmas"

01 All I Want For Christmas Is You
02 Miss You Most (At Christmas Time)
03 Jesus Born On This Day



01 Fantasy
02 Underneath The Stars
03 One Sweet Day (with Boyz II Men)
04 Open Arms
05 Always Be My Baby
06 I Am Free
07 When I Saw You
08 Long Ago
09 Melt Away
10 Forever
11 Daydream Interlude (Fantasy Sweet Dub Mix)
12 Looking In



01 Honey
02 Butterfly
03 My All
04 The Roof
05 Fourth Of July
06 Breakdown (feat. Krayzie Bone & Wish Bone)
07 Babydoll
08 Close My Eyes
09 Whenever You Call
10 Fly Away (Butterfly Reprise)
11 The Beautiful Ones (feat. Dru Hill)
12 Outside



01 Sweetheart (with JD)
02 When You Believe (with Whitney Houston)
03 Whenever You Call (with Brian McKnight)
04 I Still Believe
05 Do You Know Where You're Going To (Theme From Mahogany)



01 Do You Think Of Me
02 Everything Fades Away
03 Slipping Away
04 Endless Love (with Luther Vandross)
05 Anytime You Need A Friend (C+C Mix)
06 Fantasy (Bad Boy Remix feat. O.D.B.)
07 Always Be My Baby (Mr. Dupri Mix feat. Da Brat & Xscape)
08 Honey (So So Def Mix feat. Da Brat & JD)
09 My All / Stay Awhile (So So Def Remix feat. Lord Tariq & Peter Gunz)
10 I Still Believe / Pure Imagination (Damizza Reemix feat. Krayzie Bone & Da Brat)

15 people have lost their 11s on our journey to the top 20, leaving us with 46 left in play. However, only 33 of the remaining 11s were awarded to songs in the top 10, so we'll be losing 13 more over the next 10 eliminations.​
One Sweet Day was peak Mariah for me. They were 2 juggernauts in music at the time it’s no wonder the song did so well. Just surprised it didn’t go No 1 here in the UK. A 10 from me.

Fourth of July must be one that’s passed me by over the years. Maybe I dismissed it as it’s not typical Mariah fare from those days. I will have a fresh listen.


Staff member
2/2 on predictions? Not bad for a girl with no talent.


One Sweet Day was peak Mariah for me. They were 2 juggernauts in music at the time it’s no wonder the song did so well. Just surprised it didn’t go No 1 here in the UK. A 10 from me.
Yeah, I attribute its success in large part to the fact that both Mariah and Boyz II Men were such huge chart forces at the time. One Sweet Day broke the record for weeks at #1 which was previously held by... Boyz II Men. They were pretty much unstoppable at that point in their career, which is why I’m surprised this wasn’t included on one of their studio albums.

Honestly though, I've only done like one other rate on here (LOONA), and this is far more messy!!!!
Oh, this is nothing compared to the world of multi-artist rates (which Mariah traditionally does badly in). The nineties #1 rates in particular included some... opinions on the Mimi songs.
As sad as I am to see One Sweet Day go, the way the strong competition is remaining, something had to miss out. And also, Can't Let Go is safe inside the top 20! Hurrah!!
I'm rooting for Can't Let Go! Underrated classic. Also, whilst I don't dislike Fourth of July and I can see why people would love it, it's never quite clicked with me in the way it clearly has with so many others.
@ysev's take on "Fourth Of July"... wow! Made me appreciate the song even more!

"Underneath The Stars" better be in the top 10 now! I won't lie, it's a strong top 20, my 11 seems safe for now, but a part of me is very disappointed that - apart from "Slipping Away" and "Prisoner" - it only includes singles. Even "All I Want For Christmas Is You" is still in the running, over songs such as "Close My Eyes" and "Outside," and I truly don't get it.

If All I Want For Christmas Is You ends up winning this then the casuals really have won.

It's a fun little song (and deservedly a classic) but it needs to go now, given what it's up against.
I didn't even think of this as a possible winner but thinking about it now, I could totally see it happening because everyone gave it a safe to high score. Like a most number of 9's and 10's but no 11s kind of situation.

I'd actually be fine with it in the top 15 given how iconic it is and how much genuine joy its brought me (and everyone that's not dead inside) over the years BUT (no matter how festive it may be) it should not be in the top 10!!!!