That started out as a bass line, sort of a drum-machine, almost hip-hop type groove
- Ben Margulies
Written by Mariah Carey & Ben Margulies
Produced by Ric Wake
4:06 Album Version
3:57 MTV Unplugged Version
4:40 New 7” Jackswing
4:16 New 7” Straight
6:50 New 12” House Mix
6:55 New 12” Jackswing
4:18 Straight Mix
ABOUT THE SONG
[Talking about the music video:] Since the song is called ‘Someday,’ I would make it about me as a little girl liking some little boy and him ignoring me and me sort of saying to him ‘someday, you’re gonna be wishing for me,’ you know, that was kind of like the concept, and so the director and I, Larry Jordan, sat down and we worked out different scenes - he came up with some things, and I came up with some things, and we shot it in a high school in Bayonne, New Jersey and we had all these young kids between the ages of 6 to 12 dancing in the video and it was so much fun - it was the most fun I’ve had making a video because I got to interact with other people and I got to hang out with these kids - being around them was just so much fun, you know, and just watching some of these talented kids, like there is this one 6 year, who’s a hip hop dancer, who’s just amazing to watch, and we also worked with a guy named Larry Wright, who’s a drummer who plays in the street, and I had seen him on a PBS documentary and I just said I really want to have this kid in the video, cause he’s great, so I met him and he was really nice. I just had a great time and at the end of the video we even did an extended version for the 12 inch, and I didn’t even want to leave, I was having so much fun! I think it’s going to be really good.
The First Vision Video Interview 1991
“‘Someday’ was the third single released from Mariah Carey’s debut album, and the third single to go to number one. ‘That started out as a bass line, sort of a drum-machine, almost hip-hop type groove,’ says co-writer Ben Margulies. ‘Now people call it new jack swing, but that stuff was going on before all these terms came about. It evolved out of an improvisational track with some very strong changes and a very strong harmonic structure. Mariah has an ability to improvise vocally and come up with great melody lines, great hooks. We generally work on a chorus first, but , but she would sing melody ideas through the verse sections and it came about that way.”
Margulies explains how fast Mariah came up with the words: “In the amount of time that I would be playing around with the arrangement and coming up with some new change or something like that, she’d be sitting there writing out lyrics, then we’d demo it. I mean, we’d start turning the tape machine on, turning the computers on, and just start doing it.”
‘Someday’ was one of four songs that Margulies and Carey included on the singer’s demo tape. “All the demos that ended up going to CBS were very elaborate arrangements,” Ben notes. “They were very close to what’s on the album, if not almost exactly.”
Tommy Mottola of CBS Records asked Anglo-American producer Pic Wake, who had been working with Arista artist Taylor Dayne, to listen to Mariah Carey’s demo. “It was obvious that she was great - she was amazing,” says Wake, who met with Mottola on a Wednesday. The CBS Records Group president asked Wake if he could start working with Mariah on Thursday. “Mariah came over to my house the next day, we wrote ‘There’s Got to Be a Way,” and it went from there - we did four songs together.”
One of the tracks that Wake produced was ‘Someday.’ “I loved that song right from the beginning,” he acknowledges. “Tommy gave me a tape of 12 songs, and at the time, I think someone else was going to do it. It was up in the air, then Mariah called me up one day and said, ‘I’d love you to do it if you want to do it.” It was great - I’m glad she called me.
‘I remember the way that demo was; I wasn’t sure how she wanted to do it… We did it in about two, three hours.’
Margulies like the final version of their song “because it came off really simple and clean, and the point came across. Nothing was covered up. The original arrangement and production were very simple and funky. It had a simplicity to it that kind of drew you into it. To take it and make it too much of a production would have ruined the vibe of the song.”
When she was first signed to Columbia, Mariah wanted to produce the album herself with Margulies. “I wasn’t open to working with a super star producer,” she said in Rolling Stone. Ben elaborates: “You have your ideas and your creations, and sometimes it’s difficult. You’re seeing your songs come to fruition, but at the same time, you want to have a say in how your babies turn out. These things start out like the nucleus of the embryo of an idea. You sit down and start playing, improvising, and it comes to the point where it turns into a good demo; then you want to hear it. If you’re a strong musician, or you’re inclined to produce and arrange all that stuff, sometimes it’s hard to hand over your creations like that. But it’s inevitably what always happens, and you hope that people handle them with care.”
Fred Bronson “The Billboard Book of Number 1 Hits” Page 780, 2003
IS: The million-dollar question: What do you think would have happened if you had never met Tommy Mottola?
MC: I already had a deal with Warner Bros. that was pending. It was through Ben Margulies, who I had written most of my first album with — lots of it when I was in high school. I used to come in and work at his studio, which was [at the back of a loft space that was covered in wood chips] and I wrote "Vision of Love" there, songs that became number one hits that I don't listen to anymore. "Someday" was a number one hit — I wrote it and recorded it there. And a song that [I was offered a] publishing deal for called "All In Your Mind" — it was on my first album [1990's Mariah Carey]. [Someone at another company] was like, "We'll give you 5,000 for this!”
Interview (US) “The Naked Truth From The World’s Biggest Diva” by Ingrid Sischy, September 2007
“This was one of my favorite songs when I was writing it for my demo. I remember being a kid and listening to it over and over on the subway after the studio sessions. I wish I could press rewind and delete some moments from the video and some of the overproduction on the debut album. That’s why I included the version from MTV Unplugged on this album!”
#1 to Infinity liner notes, 2015
1990 Released on the Mariah Carey album.
1992 Live recording released on the MTV Unplugged EP.
1998 Included on the #1s compilation.
2001 Included on the Greatest Hits compilation.
2015 Included on the #1 to Infinity compilation.