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4.2 out of 5 stars
Format: Audio CD|Change
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on January 26, 2010
Okay... so maybe this isn't a collection of the very best Mariah has to offer. If you wanted Mariah's greatest hits, then you should get "Mariah Carey: Greatest Hits." Or perhaps you should go download the songs you want individually. What this CD is, is a compilation album containing some of Mariah's personal favorites from her Columbia days. Songs that may have never been commercially released but were "hits" with the fans as well. No, not everyone is going to be ecstatic about the songs chosen for this CD, but they are still great songs. The album goes to show that songs don't need to spend 14 weeks at the top of the Billboard Hot 100 in order to be good. In fact, only 3 of these tracks made it to #1. Still, anyone that appreciates music cannot deny the power of the haunting vocals of "Vanishing" or the vulnerability of "Looking In." You can also listen to Mariah trying to find herself, both artistically ("Babydoll") and personally ("Outside"). The bottom line is, you don't have to get the CD if you don't want to (it shows the tracklist so it's not exactly false advertising), but if you do, you get 14 great Mariah songs for $6.99.
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on March 27, 2010
This is the compilation Sony should've released instead of the redundant Ballads collection. Mariah had a hand in the song choices this time around, picking Columbia owned non singles that mean the most to her. It's great to find Underneath the Stars, Babydoll, Breakdown, and Looking In on one disc, but singles like Fantasy, Emotions, and Dreamlover have been featured on almost every other compilation. They've could've traded them in for other non singles like Fourth of July, Petals, and Close My Eyes. Still a great sampler for casual listeners.
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on March 22, 2011
This compilation is great for summing up some of Mariah's most memorable songs during the first 10 years of her career, even if it doesn't amount, in my opinion, to a "Best Of." I think that someday, there should be a mixture of her songs released which were never put out as singles. These are almost without exception my favorites of hers, the ones which the majority of people never hear (and why, I think, Mariah is so underrated artistically). That wish will probably remain a pipedream of many fans, though.

This CD comes close, including surprising tracks, like the beautiful "Rainbow Interlude" (sadly, though, is better with "Petals" preceding it as it was on the Rainbow album), the very sensual "Bliss" (one of my personal favorites of hers) and "Babydoll", as well as some introspection in "Outside," "Looking in," and "I Am Free." It even includes probably the best song from her debut album, "Vanishing," which she wrote when she was still a teenager. "Vanishing" is one of those songs that you need to hear at least once -- the lyrics are intelligent but vague enough that you can put your own interpretation to it -- just as any good poetry should be.

However, I notice that there are a couple of songs on here which are on just about every other compilation. Most notoriously, "Dreamlover," no matter how quintessentially Mariah this song is, it is overplayed STILL, almost 20 years post-release. I realize they had to include some of her better-known songs on here to attract more of an audience, but I feel the compilation could have been stronger without those songs, and replaced with some of her other songs. If we're talking '90s songs, then the soothing "Music Box," heartbreaking "Can't Let Go" or even the inspirational "Close My Eyes" would have added a lot to this collection. Also, it needs more upbeat numbers, like "To Be Around You" or "There's Got to Be A Way." The compilation is very slow ballad heavy as it is.

I would recommend wholeheartedly this album for anyone who does not own any other Mariah compilations, as it will expose the listener to songs he/she may not expect from a Mariah album (especially if the listener has only heard songs like "Fantasy" and "Dreamlover").
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on November 23, 2012
This Very Best Of Mariah Carey is a great place to start if you are just getting into her music. Yes you could do the greatest hits which has more tracks but this collection gives you a great overview of her work without breaking the bank. It's contains fourteen tracks that you will enjoy. It has everything you except from Mariah the ballads, r&b, and pop. You won't find any of her def jam singles here because this is from her columbia days. The thing you can depend on is the voice is front and center. For someone who is just getting into Mariah work this is a good place to start your collection then you can go to the greatest hits if you want it's up to you depending on how much money you want to spend on her. But for me like every Mariah fan had to have the album to add to my collection because I have been a fan since I was younger. But it truly up to you if you want to get it because if you love the songs you will want it if you don't have all the albums but if you already have all the albums then it's up to you but I will tell you this. This is one of my favorite Mariah album I own in my collection and I love putting it on and just hearing the voice fill the air.
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on March 2, 2010
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on February 11, 2013
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on March 3, 2010
This is a great compilation of lesser known Mariah songs.
As a Mariah fan, I have to say that often her biggest and most famous songs may not necessary be her best.
This compilation serves as an alternative or a companion collection to her more traditional Greatest Hits album & No #1s.
It includes some brilliant Mariah songs that should be savoured:

1) Underneath the Stars - one of the most underrated R&B jams by Mariah. She sounds absolutely effortless in her rendition
2) Melt Away - Another unappreciated classic. Co-written with Babyface, it features one of her most soulful performances ever (and it truely shows her incredible low range as evidenced during the start of the song)
3) Bliss - a complete counter point to Melt Away. this song highlights her amazing whistle register which is truely incomparable. She is probably the only singer alive who can sound so melodic & effortless when singing in this range.
4) Breakdown - one of her best 'rapid fire singing style' song. it sounds as current as when it was released 13 years ago on the 'Butterfly' album. Probably the predecessor to her current anthem 'We Belong Together'
5) Vanishing - another classic from her 1st album in 1990. to be able to sound so soulful and powerful at 19 years old show the incredible talent that Mariah Carey possesses
6) Rainbow (Interlude) - perfect way to end this collection with this short number. one of those songs that leave u wanting more. if only she had written a full song based on the exquisite melody here.

All in all definitely a worthy collection to any casual Mariah fan.
Buy it!
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There is no question about Mariah's success during her Columbia days back in the 90's. She had made record-breaking moment after moment. BUt when she left for other labels, with Virgin and later with Island, she never was able to really re-capture the multi-platinum status she had definitive shown, with the exception her 2005 album, The Emancipation Of Mimi. But, there honestly hasn't been a definitive reflection of whom Mariah Carey has been, with a few overshadowed tracks. Now, with the appeal of Sony's Playlist series, Mariah music is now being showcased from her 90's Sony era, but it isn't definitive as it shows.

Playlist: The Very Best Of Mariah Carey isn't a definitive reflection of Mariah's career as it says it is. The collection of songs doesn't actually showcase Mariah's biggest career-spanning songs, but instead mainly focuses in on lesser-known tracks for anyone whom is new to Mariah's music. The collection does include a few of her classics like Emotions, Dreamlover, and Make It Happen. But overall, a lot of lesser-known songs are here like Bliss, Melt Away, Underneath The Stars, and Vanishing. The collection overlooks a whole lot of Mariah's big standards here as well. You won't find her biggest hits like the intimate Hero, her debut smash Vision Of Love, or any of her biggest collaborations here like One Sweet Day with Boyz II Men, or the Oscar-winning duet with Whitney Houston on When You Believe. Overall it leaves a bittersweet taste of spoiled honey, that could've been more exciting.

Overall, this might be a great buy if you're a die hard Mariah Carey fan, but honestly it wouldn't be worth the money that you'd spend on. There are better Mariah Carey collections that are worth the purchase like her 1998 #1's album, or her 2001 Greatest Hits double-album. But anyway you look at it, Playlist: The Very Best Of Mariah Carey isn't exactly the vision of love for anyone who wants a definitive Mariah Carey collection of great songs.

Album Cover: B-

Songs: D 1/2+

Price: C-

Remastering: B-

Overall: D+
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on December 23, 2010
This is the kind of records that reminds me why Mariah Carey is the biggest voice of her generation. I've never heard a voice like that!.
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on October 26, 2010
i brought this cd because i buy every cd she comes out with and i love her voice more then anything and i can't stand people especially black peolpe who love to judge her and not know anything about her. Her voice is the best and will always beat the test of time as the most great diva in the world. Now you yes youuuuu who are reading this must know that i am a huge mariah carey fan and i will always be her man. Just playing i know she is married to nick cannon, but i still love her and wil always love her no matter what, so haters just listen to her amazing voice and know that her presence is just amazing and if it was up to me their would have been a double disc with a lot more great songs i mean don't get me wrong it's not bad but it could have been better.
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