by Joseph Kuhn
Mariah Carey, the biggest-selling female artist of all time with 17 number 1 Billboard Hot 100 singles (2nd only to the Beatles), is an appropriation artist in her own right. Many of her songs heavily rely on samples from other songs and artists. Moreover, Miss Carey often collaborates with the original artists on her sampled compositions.
While many of Mariah's early songs feature samples (such as 1993's "Dreamlover", which samples The Emotions' "Blind Alley" and perhaps most famously, 1995's "Fantasy" and subsequent remix, which sample the Tom Tom Club's "Genius of Love) Mariah's 1997 Album, Butterfly, saw a creative rebirth of the songstress as an R&B artist. Shrugging off her pop sensibility, as well as most of her clothing, Mariah enlisted the preeminent hip-hop producers of the time to construct a sample-heavy album, the normative practice in the urban music scene. Mariah has continued in this tradition with each additional album.
Mariah Samples... features two continuous mixes of Mariah songs that sample other works. The Mariah tracks alternate with their source material. With this arrangement, the sample is foregrounded, and one can hear both the similarities and differences between the tracks.
The first mix is a dance mix with the following tracks. "Honey," the first single off 1997's Butterfly and her 12th number 1 single, samples the synth line of Lighter Shade of Brown's "Hey DJ." "Heartbreaker (Ain't No Fun Remix)" was released to urban markets as the first single off Mariah's 1999 Album Rainbow and saw Mariah collaborating with Missy Elliot and Da Brat. The number 1 song samples the 1993 track "Ain't No Fun" by Snoop Dogg, who makes a cameo in the video for the "Heartbreaker" remix. 1995's "Fantasy (Remix)," arguably one of Mariah's most popular tracks and also a Hot 100 number 1, marked her first real forray into hip-hop, featuring a rap solo by the Wu Tang Clan's Ol Dirty Bastard (ODB). The track, as well as the non-remixed version, from Mariah's best-selling Album, Daydream, sample the Tom Tom Club's "Genius of Love." Finally, "Loverboy," from 2001's ill-fated Glitter soundtrack, samples Cameo's hit "Candy," and also features Cameo himself on the track. Interestingly enough, "Loverboy" was originally recorded with a sample from Yellow Light Orchestra's "Firecracker;" however, after Jennifer Lopez stole the sample for her own summer hit, "I'm Real," Mariah was forced to re-structure the song. [Transition times are listed after each song]:
Mariah Carey - Honey (4:49)
Lighter Shade of Brown - Hey D.J. (8:29)
Mariah ft. Missy Elliot and Da Brat - Heartbreaker (Ain't No Fun Remix) (12:36)
Snoop Dogg - Ain't No Fun (16:22)
Mariah ft. ODB - Fantasy (Remix) (20:54)
Tom Tom Club - Genius of Love (25:09)
Mariah Carey ft. Cameo - Loverboy (28:46)
Cameo - Candy
The second mix is a hip-hop mix with the following tracks. "My All (Stay A While Remix)," the second single off of the Butterfly album and Mariah's 13th number 1 single, features a sample of the Loose Ends' "Stay a Little While Child." "The Roof," also a track from Butterfly samples Mobb Deep's "Shook Ones, Pt. 2." Incidentally, the remix of "The Roof" features a rap by Mobb Deep. "Miss You" (featuring Jadakiss) was initially only made available as a bonus track on the international release of Mariah's 2002 album, Charmbracelet. It features a sample from Puff Daddy's "All About the Benjamins" featuring Lil' Kim, the Lox, and Notorious BIG. Finally, "Breakdown," also from Butterfly, samples Bone Thugz & Harmony's hip-hop classic "Crossroads." Bone Thugz make an appearance on the track as well. [Transition times are listed after each song]:
Mariah Carey ft. Lord Tariq - My All (Stay a While Remix) (4:21)
Loose Ends - Stay a Little While Child (8:10)
Mariah Carey - The Roof (12:40)
Mobb Deep - Shook Ones, Pt. 2 (16:36)
Mariah Carey ft. Jadakiss - Miss You (21:36)
Puff Daddy - All About the Benjamins (26:09)
Mariah Carey ft. Bone Thugz & Harmony - Breakdown (30:36)
Bone Thugz & Harmony - Crossroads