Born: March 27, 1970 Height: 5' 9"
Mariah Carey was born on March 27, 1970 near Long Island, NY, to Alfred and Patricia Carey. She has both an older brother and sister, Morgan and Alison respectively. When she was around three years old, her parents divorced due in part to racial prejudice against them (Alfred is Venezualen and African-American, Patricia is Irish). She subsequently was raised by her mother, a voice coach and opera singer, and was forced to move often because of difficult finances. It was also around the time she was three that she began to sing, often singing to her brother's radio or to spite her parents. Her highest octave is two higher than a normal soprano.
Mariah attended Harborfields High School in Greenlawn, NY, where she claims she was not much of a student. During this time, she sang for her brother's band and recorded her first demo in a studio her friend worked for. Because they were borrowing the studio, they were forced to record into the early hours of the morning. As a result Mariah often missed school, bringing her the nickname "Mirage". Just days after graduating from high school, Mariah moved to New York City with a friend, where they shared a mattress on the floor of a dingy apartment.
During her time in the city, Mariah worked a variety of odd jobs to support herself, including hat/coat-checking, hostessing, and sweeping hair salons. Before long, she won a job singing backup for pop star Brenda K. Starr, which eventually became her road to success. At a party with Starr in the late eighties, Mariah met with record execs and attempted to give one her demo. Instead it was snatched up by Tommy Mottola of then CBS Records. He listened to it in the limo and shortly after signed her to his label. Carey began dating Mottola while recording Music Box, and married him (1993-1997).
Since then, Mariah has had a whirlwind success, including number one hits (more than any other solo artist), platinum albums, Grammy awards, and anything else you can imagine. Aside from her commercial accomplishments, Carey has won 5 Grammy Awards, 19 World Music Awards, 11 American Music Awards, and 14 Billboard Music Awards and has been consistently credited with inspiring a generation of singers. Referred to as the "songbird supreme" by the Guinness World Records, she is famed for her five-octave vocal range, power, melismatic style and signature use of the whistle register.