Drum roll, please. Mariah Carey -- still mourning the recent death of her father -- has chosen a name for her record label. And it is MonarC, as in the monarch butterfly. The M and C are capitalized for Mariah's initials.
A San Francisco jazz label called Monarch Records wasn't interested in relinquishing its name, even though Mariah asked. Hence, the unusual spelling.
After some brainstorming Carey and her management came up with this idea, rather than just winging it. MonarC will be distributed by Island/Def Jam Records, which is part of the Universal Music Group.
As for Carey's recordings, her first single will be out during the last week of September, which will make the Grammy deadline of Oct. 1. The single was recorded, like the rest of the new album, on the island of Capri off the coast of Italy.
What won't happen with this release is the same debacle that afflicted Glitter, Mariah's last project. Glitter -- the worst movie of 2001 -- was undermined by many things including possible theft of some of its music by Jennifer Lopez and Ja Rule, courtesy of Sony Music.
But all that is behind Mariah now, I am told. And certainly it's incumbent upon Doug Morris and Lyor Cohen of Universal to have a big, big hit with Carey right away.
Ironically, Mariah's single will debut just a week or so after Whitney Houston's new album is released on Arista. This column reported on July 10 that Houston's new single, "Whatchulookinat," had been leaked to radio stations.
It was catchy -- no doubt about it. But according to Radio & Records, which monitors airplay, almost no one is playing it. (Give it a spin, guys! The voice is better than ever.)
This is kind of interesting since I heard recently that one of the four major networks (Fox, ABC, NBC, CBS) inquired on Houston's behalf about a special featuring the two divas. I'm told however that Carey's advisors declined the opportunity.
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