It’s a special occasion: 10 years since Mimi’s emancipating “It’s Like That”!

January 7, 2005.

While she unofficially debuted the single at a New Years Eve party as 2004 turned to 2005, Mariah Carey dropped the lead single from her comeback album, The Emancipation of Mimi, on January 7, 2005. Compared with all her prior lead singles, “It’s Like That” was new territory for Carey. While she was no stranger to hip-hop influenced R&B, the club-ready, party sound of “It’s Like That” was fresh for her, yet fit right in on radio. After the less-than-stellar lead singles from Glitter (“Loverboy,” 2001) debacle and the underperforming Charmbracelet (“Through the Rain,” 2002), radio grew icy towards Mariah. Two rap/sung collaborations, though, helped radio regain some faith in the diva, though: “I Know What You Want” with Busta Rhymes and “U Make Me Wanna” with Jadakiss.

“It’s Like That” was produced by Mariah and long time collaborator Jermaine Dupri, and features DJ Fat Man Scoop. It had all the things one would want from a Mariah Carey uptempo: great harmonies, fun lyrics, catchy melody, and vocal acrobatics. It slowly but surely worked its way up the charts and became a radio hit. Meanwhile, it’s Brett Ratner-directed music video became an event in itself, featuring a number of high profile cameos and a teasing “to be continued” ending.

Similar to “Honey,” “It’s Like That” was a bit of a symbolic song for Mariah. It is a celebratory, liberating song that kicked off her comeback, attributed by her creative and commercial rebirth. She opens the track by exclaiming, “I came to have a party” and then proclaims, “it’s my night!” and of course, that it’s “a special occasion, Mimi’s emancipation!”

Thanks to the success of “It’s Like That,” radio was hot for Mimi once more, ready to embrace the chart queen. Though “It’s Like That” was not a monster success, peaking at #15 on the Hot 100, it opened the door for the slayage to follow, the album’s second single… do you remember the name of that song?

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