"One Sweet Day" is a song recorded by American singer Mariah Carey and quartet Boyz II Men and co-written by Carey, Walter Afanasieff and Boyz II Men members Wanya Morris, Shawn Stockman, Nathan Morris, and Michael McCary. It was co-produced by Carey and Afanasieff for Carey's sixth album Daydream, and was released as the album's second single in 1995 (see 1995 in music). It holds the record for the longest run at number one on the U.S. Billboard Hot 100 (16 weeks total), and is the biggest American hit of both Carey's and Boyz II Men's careers.
"One Sweet Day" was inspired by the death of producer and C+C Music Factory member David Cole, as well as Mariah's “Guitar Legend,” Def Leppard guitarist Steve Clark, in 1991. While brainstorming with Boyz II Men on a possible collaboration, Mariah discovered that the group had written a tribute to their manager who was murdered while they were on tour. Her song plus theirs became “One Sweet Day.” David Cole worked with Mariah Carey on her two previous albums, including her 'MTV Unplugged' album. During this period, she had arranged to record a song with Boyz II Men. This is also one of the songs that Carey uses to showcase the power of her voice on her Daydream album.
In terms of Billboard magazine charts, 'The song is the most successful single for both Mariah Carey and Boyz II Men'. The protagonists lament the deaths of friends, but say that they will be together again "one sweet day". The single's video, directed by Larry Jordan, is made up of footage showing Carey and Boyz II Men writing and recording in the song in the studio, as it was difficult for both Boyz II Men and Carey to schedule a time to film a video.
There are no major remixes of the song, but there is a Chuck Thompson-produced remix, "One Sweet Day" (Chucky's remix), which gives the song a slightly more R&B feel. An a cappella version of the song, known as the "Sweet a cappella", features slightly different vocal arrangements and a new intro which also serves as a counter melody throughout the song.
This song was performed by the Top 7 contestants of American Idol (season 7). It was the group performance on the elimination night.
The single became Carey's tenth number-one single on the Hot 100 and Boyz II Men's fourth, remaining at the peak for a record-breaking, consecutive sixteen weeks from November 26 1995 to March 16 1996. Boyz II Men had previously held this record twice, with "End of the Road" (1992) spending thirteen weeks at the top and "I'll Make Love to You" (1994) spending fourteen. (The former song shares this record with Brandy and Monica's "The Boy Is Mine", and the latter song shared its record with Whitney Houston's cover of Dolly Parton's "I Will Always Love You".) Mariah Carey's "We Belong Together" managed to stay at #1 for 14 weeks as well. "One Sweet Day" replaced "Exhale (Shoop Shoop)" by Whitney Houston at number one, and was replaced by Celine Dion's "Because You Loved Me".
The single also debuted at number one, making Carey the first artist to have more than one number-one debut, and also the only artist ever to have two consecutive singles debut at number one. The single spent twenty-six weeks in the top forty, was certified two times platinum by the RIAA, and ranked number two on the Hot 100 1996 year-end charts. Despite its success in the United States, it was not as big a hit elsewhere as previous Carey singles such as "Fantasy" (1995), the first release from Daydream. It failed to top any chart outside the U.S aside of New Zealand's, but was a top ten hit in the United Kingdom, France, Australia, and Canada. It had some success across Continental Europe, but failed to match the success of "Fantasy". However it did reach number 1 on the United World Chart staying there for 6 weeks. It ranked #5 at the end of the year chart. It was Boyz II Men's biggest success outside the U.S. since "End of the Road", and was later included on their greatest hits release Legacy: The Greatest Hits Collection (2001).
"One Sweet Day" was nominated for the 1996 Grammy Awards for "Record of the Year" and "Best Pop Collaboration with Vocals", losing both categories. As two of the top nominees at the 1996 Grammy Awards, Carey and Boyz II Men were invited to perform, and sang "One Sweet Day". Carey began the evening happily as she had been nominated for six Grammys that night. "One Sweet Day" was the current #1 record on the Hot 100 at that time, and the following morning it was announced that it had just broken the record set by Whitney Houston, giving Mariah a "consolation prize".
|Chart (1995)|| Peak|
|U.S. Billboard Hot 100||1|
|U.S. Billboard Hot R&B Singles & Tracks||2|
|U.S. Billboard Hot Singles Sales||1|
|U.S. Billboard Hot 100 Airplay||1|
|U.S. Billboard Hot Adult Contemporary Tracks||1|
|Israeli Singles Chart||1|
|New Zealand RIANZ Singles Chart||1|
|Australian ARIA Singles Chart||2|
|Canadian Singles Chart||1|
|French Singles Chart||5|
|Norwegian Singles Chart||6|
|UK Singles Chart||6|
|Swiss Singles Chart||12|
|Italian Singles Chart||23|
|German Singles Chart||25|
|GLOBAL TRACK Chart||1|