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5

“Can’t Take That Away (Mariah’s Theme) (Morales Revival Triumphant Mix)”

Though she was a full year away from her infamous public breakdown, you could hear the cracks beginning to appear in Sony’s then-seemingly invincible Golden Girl in the spoken intro to Morales’s remix of “Can’t Take That Away.” She seems to be trying to assure herself as much as her fans when she advises, “No matter what they try to do, no matter what they try to say…” Though it powers along at 120 beats per minute for over 10 minutes, there’s something laidback about the track that’s owed to both that soulful, Stevie-esque harmonica and, of course, Mariah’s wearied performance. Cinquemani

4

“Fly Away (Butterfly Reprise) (Def ‘B’ Fly Mix)”

And once in a while it’s possible for a remix to stretch a moment of sincerity out in an attempt to, well, “make it last forever.” That Mariah was particularly in tune with the persistently personal nature of “Butterfly” goes without saying. What she and Morales, the muscle behind the majority of her club-bound remixes, did with the jazzy, dubby album interlude was nothing short of plunging into the heart of the material, exploring both the lyric and the groove (not unlike Marvin Gaye with his I Want You sessions) and willing its brilliance out of the cocoon. Henderson

3

“Fantasy (Bad Boy with O.D.B.)”

Mariah’s affinity for remixes can, perhaps, be traced back to her storied creative and personal imprisonment by Sony head Tommy Mottola. The singer was allowed to experiment on remixes in ways Thomas and her other handlers were resistant to let her do on her first few albums. Puff Daddy’s remix of 1995’s “Fantasy” replaced Mariah’s original hook with the bridge, which was lifted from Tom Tom Club’s “Genius of Love,” and yet the track somehow felt, and still feels, more like Mariah Carey than anything else she’s done to date. She may not have yet been fully emancipated, but it’s clear she’d tasted a little bit of freedom. Cinquemani

2

“Dreamlover (Def Club Mix)”

Mariah’s first collaboration with David Morales also marked the first time the singer recorded completely new vocals for a remix. A fun factoid, sure, but it’s prescient because her sultrier new performance of “Dreamlover” represented a total 180 from the peppy, decidedly major-key album version. When she spends a whole 60 seconds riffing on the lyric “Somebody come and take me away,” she isn’t just relishing a good hook; it’s a desperate, impassioned petition for deliverance. Cinquemani

1

“Anytime You Need a Friend (C&C Club Version)”

House can excavate lava flows of feeling from even the coldest, most mechanical of sources. Need convincing? Witness that not just one, but two of the finest moments in early-‘90s house (and our easy picks for the top two slots on this list) were extracted from Mariah’s empty Music Box. The album version of “Dreamlover” at least had buoyancy in its wheelhouse, but how Robert Clivillés and David Cole managed to transform the totally insincere sisterhood of “Anytime You Need a Friend” into an 11-minute, organ-and-choir-saturated garage baptismal that, as we previously pointed out in our Mariah retrospective, “had princesses, queens, and guidos all over the tri-state area crying on the dance floor” is alchemy of the highest order. Henderson

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