After a brief rest on the bench, From The Vault is back this week with one of the most successful releases of the 1990′s. It’s Mariah Carey‘s melismatic ‘One Sweet Day’, her smash duet with R&B’s finest Boyz II Men.
The second single lifted from Mimi’s blockbuster LP ‘Daydream’, ‘Day’s production was cooked up by Carey and former fervent collaborator Walter Afanasieff. It was written by the dynamic duo alongside the R&B quad about specific loved ones who passed away. Most notably, it was also penned with people affected by the AIDS epidemic in mind – in a bid to raise awareness.
On a chart front, the single remains a landmark to this day; it debuted at #1 – which was the singer’s second consecutive single to do so. Yet, most importantly, it is the longest running #1 single on Billboard Hot 100 of all time, totaling an impressive 16 consecutive weeks at the top. It became Mimi’s tenth chart-topper on that tally and the Boyz’ fourth.
(Fun fact: the single replaced Whitney Houston’s ‘Exhale (Shoop Shoop)’ at #1 and was replaced by Celine Dion’s ‘Because You Love Me’. Needless to say, power ballads staged a “chart stampede” during the mid-nineties).
A true world smash, it managed to peak inside the Top 10 in many European countries and remains a fixture on “talent shows” all around the globe.
With the success and the critical acclaim the single and its parent album had received, it was believed Mariah was a shoe-in for a Grammy sweep after being nominated 6 times in 1996, but all those assumptions were cut short when the ‘Outside’ vocalist went home empty-ended on Grammy night. An injustice if we’ve ever seen one.
Given that Mimi and the Boyz were enjoying gargantuan success in their own rights, busy schedules meant both parties didn’t have time to shoot a proper music video for the single. So in order to make the most of their tenure together, Larry Jordan was in charge of documenting the conception of the track. This edited footage was turned into the track’s “video”.
Its raw quality suited the heartfelt song to the tee, choosing to put the emphasis on the group bonding and the song’s almost other-worldly vocals, rather than drowning everything in “glamorous” and “sophisticated” sets – ala some of Mariah’s more outlandish visuals since her post-Butterfly days.
With “The New Era” nigh, we can’t wait for Ms. Carey-Cannon to unleash it. Did ‘Triumphant (Get ‘Em)’ make the cut? What about ‘Almost Home’? Are we in for some more Adult Contemporary numbers in the vein of ‘#Beautiful’? Are there any other collaborations to help her on the charts? We guess it’s a matter of time until we find out. Hopefully.
Still, we’re hoping her ever-loyal ‘Lambily’ and we – over at TGJ HQ – aren’t the only ones anticipating new Mimi. Album and single sales will tell, ay?