Mariah Carey is undeniably successful. She’s smashed Billboard records and set the highest single-day streaming record on Spotify. But she still feels like she doesn’t get all the respect she deserves.
Carey was inducted into the Songwriters Hall of Fame on Thursday, and gave a speech following an introduction from Questlove. It became evident that she wanted to clear some things up in regards to people routinely underestimating her abilities as a songwriter.
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“I constantly have to remind people I’m a songwriter,” Carey said in her speech. “It’s become a joke to the point where… because they’re all onto the diva thing, it’s like ‘Oh my gosh, she’s a diva, wow, a diva.’ Whatever.” She acknowledged how much she brings up songwriting. “You’re maybe somewhat familiar with the meme of me going over and over, ‘As a songwriter, as a songwriter, as a songwriter, as a songwriter.’ So hopefully tonight we can create another meme as a songwriter,” she joked.
Carey went on to note that she, too, used to have misconceptions about what songwriting entailed. “I just always assumed the person that you’re listening to on the radio was the one who wrote the song,” she recalled. “But to know the people that are sort of the unsung heroes of the whole thing, it’s an amazing situation. So please, one more round of applause for yourselves.”
She was also sure to emphasize that female songwriters are even more unsung. “Out of the 439 total inductees into the Songwriters Hall of Fame, only 32 have been women up until this moment,” she said to conclude her speech. “Now it’s 33.”