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Forever (Mariah Carey song)

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Single by Mariah Carey
from the album Daydream
B-side "Underneath the Stars"
Released March 10, 1996
Format CD single, 12" Vinyl
Recorded 1995
Length 4:00
Label Columbia
Writer(s) Mariah Carey, Walter Afanasieff
Producer(s) Mariah Carey, Walter Afanasieff
Mariah Carey singles chronology
"Always Be My Baby"
"Underneath the Stars"
Alternative covers
International CD cover

"Forever" is a song by American singer-songwriter Mariah Carey from her fifth studio album, Daydream. It was released by Columbia Records on March 10, 1996, as an airplay-only single from the album. The song was written and produced by Carey and Walter Afanasieff, and was composed throughout 1995. Its lyrics describe a situation where the protagonist knows her relationship with her lover has withered away, however he will continue living in her memory forever.

The song's music video is a collage of snippets from Carey's shows at the Tokyo Dome, during her Daydream World Tour in 1996. Most of the video is the performance of the song during one of the three Japanese shows on the tour. Serving as an airplay only song in the US, and a limited release around the world, the song achieved minimal chart success. In the United States, Billboard rules did not allow the charting of non-commercially released songs. For this reason, it did not chart on the Hot 100, however peaking at number two on the Adult Contemporary chart. Outside the US, the song peaked at number 11 in Canada, 40 in New Zealand and 44 in the Netherlands.


A 24-second sample from Mariah Carey's "Forever". The song features 50's style instrumentation, with doo-wop influences.

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"Forever" was written and produced by Carey and Walter Afanasieff in early 1995.[1] The song is written in the key of A major and features a basic chord progression of A-C/G-Fm/E-D-E.[2] Throughout "Forever," Carey's voice spans from the low note of G3 to the high note of A5.[2] According to author Chris Nickson, the song's instrumentation and throw-back melody bring reminders of 1950s and 60s balladry.[1] The throw-back was featured through the chord changes, and in the way that the guitar arpeggios "stayed at the forefront of the music."[1] "Forever" finds Carey displaying subtle and harmonizing vocals, with Nickson describing her voice as "undeniably rich."[1] Stephen Holden from The New York Times described it as a "50's-style rock-and-roll ballad," while calling Carey's voice "magnificent."[3]


Ken Tucker, an editor from Entertainment Weekly praised the song's instrumentation, writing "I like the brisk waltz tempo of 'Forever.'"[4] "Forever" was released as an airplay only single in the US, and received a limited European release.[1] Due to Billboard rules at the time of its release, "Forever" wasn't eligible to chart on the Hot 100. However, the song charted on the Adult Contemporary chart, peaking at number two. In Canada, the song peaked at number 11 on the Canadian RPM Singles Chart issue dated September 30, 1996.[5] In New Zealand, the song entered the singles chart at its peak of number 40, spending only one week in the chart.[6] On the Dutch Singles Chart, "Forever" peaked at number 47, fluctuating in the chart for a total of nine weeks.[7]

Music video and live performances[edit]

"Forever" was first performed in October 1995 in Carey's concert at Madison Square Garden. The next year it was performed throughout all the shows on Carey's Daydream World Tour in 1996.[8] The music video for "Forever" was filmed at one of the Japanese shows during the tour.[1] It presents Carey singing the song on stage at the Tokyo Dome, and inter-cuts scenes from other segments of the show. For the show and video, Carey wore a pair of black pants and matching blouse, together with a long leather trench coat. Her hair teased in a long wavy fashion, and is a golden-auburn color. The video features three back-up singers, one male and two female and a large projection screen on the stage's rear.[1] The live audio of this performance was released on the single.

Formats and track listing[edit]

European CD Single[9]

  1. "Forever" – 4:01
  2. "Forever" (Live) – 4:12

Australian CD Single[10]

  1. "Forever" – 4:01
  2. "Underneath the Stars" – 3:33
  3. "Forever" (Live) – 4:12
  4. "Make It Happen" (Live) – 4:43

Credits and personnel[edit]

Credits adapted from the Daydream liner notes.[11]



  1. ^ a b c d e f g Nickson 1998, pp. 149
  2. ^ a b "Mariah Carey – Forever – Digital Sheet Music". Alfred Publishing. Retrieved 2009-05-05. 
  3. ^ Holden, Stephen (1995-10-08). "Pop Music; Mariah Carey Glides Into New Territory". The New York Times. The New York Times Company. Retrieved 2010-10-20. 
  4. ^ Tucker, Ken (1995-10-13). "Daydream (1995)". Entertainment Weekly. Time Warner. Retrieved 2010-10-20. 
  5. ^ "Top Singles - Volume 64, No. 7, September 30, 1996". RPM. 1996-09-30. Retrieved 2010-09-13. 
  6. ^ "Mariah Carey - Forever". Hung Medien. Retrieved 2010-12-10. 
  7. ^ "Mariah Carey - Forever". Hung Medien. Retrieved 2010-12-10. 
  8. ^ Nickson 1998, pp. 155
  9. ^ Forever (UK CD Single liner notes). Mariah Carey. Columbia Records. 1996. 663477 1. 
  10. ^ Forever (Australian CD Single liner notes). Mariah Carey. Columbia Records. 1996. 663440 2. 
  11. ^ Carey, Mariah (1995). Daydream (Liner Notes) (Compact Disc). Mariah Carey. New York City, New York: Columbia Records. 
  12. ^ Ryan, Gavin (2011). Australia's Music Charts 1988–2010. Mt. Martha, VIC, Australia: Moonlight Publishing. 
  13. ^ Nanda Lwin (1999). Top 40 Hits: The Essential Chart Guide. Music Data Canada. ISBN 1-896594-13-1. 
  14. ^ "Top RPM Singles: Issue 9929." RPM. Library and Archives Canada. Retrieved May 23, 2015.
  15. ^ "Top RPM Adult Contemporary: Issue 9513." RPM. Library and Archives Canada. Retrieved May 31, 2015.
  16. ^ " – Mariah Carey – Forever" (in Dutch). Single Top 100. Retrieved May 23, 2015.
  17. ^ " – Mariah Carey – Forever". Top 40 Singles. Retrieved May 23, 2015.
  18. ^ "Mariah Carey – Chart history" Billboard Radio Songs for Mariah Carey. Retrieved May 23, 2015.
  19. ^ "Mariah Carey – Chart history" Billboard Adult Contemporary for Mariah Carey. Retrieved May 23, 2015.
  20. ^ "Mariah Carey – Chart history" Billboard Adult Pop Songs for Mariah Carey. Retrieved May 23, 2015.
  21. ^ "Mariah Carey – Chart history" Billboard Pop Songs for Mariah Carey. Retrieved May 23, 2015.
  22. ^ "Mariah Carey – Chart history" Billboard Rhythmic Songs for Mariah Carey. Retrieved May 23, 2015.
  23. ^ "RPM Year End Top 100 Hit Tracks". RPM. December 16, 1996. Retrieved May 23, 2015. 
  24. ^ "RPM Year End Top 100 Adult Contemporary Tracks". RPM. December 16, 1996. Retrieved May 23, 2015. 
  25. ^ a b "The Year in Music: 1996" (PDF). Billboard. December 28, 1996. Retrieved May 23, 2015. 


External links[edit]