I Don't Wanna Cry

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For other uses of "I Don't Wanna Cry", see I Don't Wanna Cry (disambiguation).
"I Don't Wanna Cry"
Cassette commercial single
Single by Mariah Carey
from the album Mariah Carey
B-side "You Need Me"
Released April 25, 1991 (1991-04-25)
Format CD single, cassette single, 7" single
Recorded 1990
Length 4:49
Label Columbia
Writer(s) Mariah Carey, Narada Michael Walden
Producer(s) Narada Michael Walden For Perfection Light Productions
Mariah Carey singles chronology
"I Don't Wanna Cry"
"There's Got to Be a Way"

"I Don't Wanna Cry" is a song written by Mariah Carey and Narada Michael Walden, and produced by Walden for Carey's debut album, Mariah Carey (1990). The ballad was released as the album's fourth single in the second quarter of 1991. It became another U.S. number 1 single for Carey. Like the previous singles released from Mariah Carey, the song received a BMI Pop Award.

Composition and recording[edit]

"I Don't Wanna Cry" was Carey's first single that she did not co-write with Ben Margulies. When she and Walden first wrote the song, she was excited because it sounded like something that would be played on the radio. Because of bad experiences during its production and because she feels it "doesn't have a message," Carey stated in an MTV interview that she dislikes the song and tries to sing it as rarely as possible. Carey had lobbied to co-produce the song, but was denied permission by Columbia Records. She often fought with Walden in the studio concerning the song's production, and as a result Walden became her least favorite among the producers who worked on her debut album.

Critical reception[edit]

Allmusic editor Ashely S. Battel highlighted this song on self-titled album.[1] While comparing Carey's Emotions album to her debut album, Rob Tannenbaum of Rolling Stone wrote, "'I Don't Wanna Cry' was the best track on Carey's debut because her downcast whispers animated the song's luxurious sorrow; at full speed her range is so superhuman that each excessive note erodes the believability of the lyric she is singing."[2]

Chart performance[edit]

"I Don't Wanna Cry" became Carey's fourth number 1 hit on the U.S. Billboard Hot 100, making her only the second act (and first female and first solo artist) after The Jackson 5 to have their first four singles reach number 1 on the Hot 100. It also made Mariah Carey a record-breaking album: every single released from it was a chart-topper in the U.S. "I Don't Wanna Cry" reached number 1 in its eighth week and spent two weeks at the top, from May 19 to June 1, 1991. It replaced "I Like the Way (The Kissing Game)" by Hi-Five, and was replaced by Extreme's "More Than Words." The single became Carey's third number 1 single on the Hot Adult Contemporary Tracks chart. It remained in the top 40 on the Hot 100 for 13 weeks and was one of four Carey singles on the chart's 1991 year-end chart, ranking 26. The song also hit number 7 in Canada and number 49 in Australia but failed to chart elsewhere.

Music video[edit]

The single's music video, directed by Larry Jordan, features Carey in a dark Midwest home and in maize, brooding over her tainted relationship.

Part of an alternative version of the music video was released on the DVD/home video The First Vision (1991), and the original, more familiar version was included on the DVD/home video #1's (1999) as a director's cut. The 1991 version had a few sepia-toned sequences that were eliminated and replaced for the DVD release. It was the only video from Carey's debut album to be included on #1's.

Cover versions[edit]

"I Don't Wanna Cry" was released as a single on iTunes from Jason Castro on American Idol, for which he performed the song on the show's seventh season.

Track listings[edit]


See also[edit]


  1. ^ [1]
  2. ^ [2]
  3. ^ "Australian-charts.com – Mariah Carey – I Don't Wanna Cry". ARIA Top 50 Singles. Retrieved May 20, 2015.
  4. ^ "Hits of the World" (PDF). Billboard. May 25, 1991. p. 63. Retrieved June 1, 2015. 
  5. ^ "Top RPM Singles: Issue 1552." RPM. Library and Archives Canada. Retrieved May 20, 2015.
  6. ^ "Top RPM Adult Contemporary: Issue 1543." RPM. Library and Archives Canada. Retrieved May 31, 2015.
  7. ^ "Charts.org.nz – Mariah Carey – I Don't Wanna Cry". Top 40 Singles. Retrieved May 20, 2015.
  8. ^ "Mariah Carey – Chart history" Billboard Hot 100 for Mariah Carey. Retrieved May 20, 2015.
  9. ^ "Mariah Carey – Chart history" Billboard Adult Contemporary for Mariah Carey. Retrieved May 20, 2015.
  10. ^ "Mariah Carey – Chart history" Billboard Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs for Mariah Carey. Retrieved May 20, 2015.
  11. ^ "RPM 100 Hit Tracks of 1991". RPM. December 21, 1991. Retrieved May 20, 2015. 
  12. ^ "RPM 100 Adult Contemporary Tracks of 1991". RPM. December 21, 1991. Retrieved May 20, 2015. 
  13. ^ a b c "The Year in Music: 1991" (PDF). Billboard. December 21, 1991. Retrieved May 20, 2015. 

External links[edit]