Mariah Carey is an American singer, songwriter, record producer, and actress. In 1990, she became known after the release of her first single Vision of Love, taken from her eponymous debut album. Mariah Carey produced four charttopping singles in the US and began what would become a string of commercially successful albums which solidified the singer as Columbia s highest selling act. Carey and Boyz II Men spent a record sixteen weeks atop the Billboard Hot 100 with One Sweet Day, which remains the longestrunning numberone song in US chart history. Following a contemptuous divorce from Sony Music head Tommy Mottola, Carey adopted a new image and traversed towards hip hop with the release of Butterfly . In 1998, she was honored as the worlds bestselling recording artist of the 1990s at the World Music Awards and subsequently named the bestselling female artist of the millennium in 2000.
Mariah Carey was born in Huntington, New York. Her father, Alfred Roy, was of African American and AfroVenezuelan descent, while her mother, Patricia , is of White Irish descent. The last name Carey was adopted by her Venezuelan grandfather, Francisco Nez, after immigrating to New York. Patricia was an occasional opera singer and vocal coach before she met Alfred in 1960. As he began earning a living as an aeronautical engineer, the couple wed later that year, and moved into a small suburb in New York. After their elopement, Patricias family disowned her due to her marrying a black man. Carey later explained that growing up, she felt a notion of neglect from her maternal family, a mark that affected her greatly. During the years between the births of Careys older sister Alison and herself, the Carey family struggled within the community due to their ethnicity. Careys name was derived from the song They Call the Wind Maria, originally from the 1951 Broadway musical Paint Your Wagon. Whe