Mariah Carey’s new memoir, The Meaning of Mariah Carey, is out this week, and over the weekend she tweeted an excerpt from the book where she reveals a surprising secret – that she secretly produced an alt-rock album in the 90s.
While working on her 1995 album Daydream, Carey says that she would “bring my little alt-rock song to the band and hum a silly guitar riff. They would pick it up and we would record it immediately. It was irreverent, raw, and urgent, and the band got into it.”
She continues: “I actually started to love some of the songs. I would fully commit to my character. I was playing with the style of the breezy-grunge, punk-light white female singers who were popular at the time. You know the ones who seemed to be so carefree with their feelings and their image. They could be angry, angsty, and messy, with old shoes, wrinkled slips, and unruly eyebrows, while every move I made was so calculated and manicured. I wanted to break free, let loose, and express my misery – but I also wanted to laugh. I totally looked forward to doing my alter-ego band sessions after Daydream each night.”
The result was Chick’s 1995 album Someone’s Ugly Daughter. In the excerpt that Carey tweeted, a preview of Chick’s song “Hermit” plays in the background, with the singer’s background vocals a “hidden layer” to the track.
A representative for Mariah Carey confirmed to Pitchfork that Carey wrote, produced, and sang background vocals on every original song on the Chick record (the album also features a cover of Cheap Trick’s “Surrender”). She was also responsible for the album packaging’s art direction, and directed one of the band’s music videos.
Someone’s Ugly Daughter is not available on streaming services, but you can hear some of the songs below.