Yes, I'm pretty sure the 'isolated vocals' videos hold a fair bit of insight to them and more notes are probably to be gleaned from them (provided you're not looking at the ones that just cut off frequencies and tell you shit's going up to A7).
I know what you mean. Well, these from the channel 'MariahsVocals' are straight from multitracks/masters, so they're to be trusted. Not those 'filtered' ones that mess around with frequencies like you said - in any case we'd be able to tell apart actual vocals from fake filtered noises. Always the cynic I guess, but it bodes well here at TRP.
Man I have to say, the new album is frustratingly boring. After the album she gave us before this, Caution is just a big snooze fest for me. The only songs on it I can really say I like are GTFO, A No No, and Giving Me Life.
I actually think it's her best album since The Emancipation of Mimi. There are a lot of whimsical sounds at play in the studio production, which works oddly well with the somber overall mood of the songwriting, makes the album sound kind of nocturnal in a way. It's a sign of her shifting gears and trying something new as well, if only a little bit, and I always enjoy a successful artistic evolution.
The album is like she said it would be. Laid back vocals, smooth, chill out sound. But I have to admit that even if I love this album, her tone isn't her best. Also I miss some more high notes. And I find it sad that she nearly didn't use her lower register. It's pure gold.
What might have been and what has been point to one end, which is always present.
A pro tip in good faith here: I'll be more than happy to add supplementary research into the OP - notes I may have missed or songs I may have not checked - but the entire reason I have this thread is that I'm also more than happy to spend time notewatching Mariah Carey and I certainly wouldn't want to miss something as obvious as a new album release.
When the run trails down to an A6 it sounds pretty natural [if you can say that - the echo effect is full-on here]. Heavenly, and TBH that album and then the single "I Don't" have plenty of pitched up notes; those notes sound unusually bright for Mariah. This C♯7 sounds OK to me.
Still, it's your call - Leavin' it all up to you, as Donny & Marie once said!
What you wrote in her general vocal timeline for 2018 is a bit hard to her I think. I agree her vocals are weaker than before and she cracks more, but her belts have been sounding healthy and incredible lately, especially in her Asian tour. She was supporting up to E♭5, had an impressive resonance, and her tone was bright and sounding like in the late 90's. Her belts are way better now than they were last year or even in 2016. They sound more open and less nasal. Also, it seems like she gained her confidence back, since she was attempting more risky notes, including whistles, as well as impressive low notes.
She played it safe on Caution because she wasn't used to her new tone, but she progressed all through the year. Okay, her soft whispery tone and falsetto don't sound as good as before, and they're way more nasal, but on the other side, her mid belts never sounded more open and resonant in my opinion.
Her tone is hard to understand; her lows are dark, her soft voice is darker too (she aged), but the belts are brighter than ever. I think she has been working a lot and adopted a healthier life style which is why the high range sounds so good, despite the cracks, the very inconsistant vibrato and the bad passaggio. Also, let's not forget she has nodules.
She has been way more consistant this year in general than in the past. She just needed time to get used to her new tone, especially when you see how different it is from the 2017's tone.
P.S.: Forgive me if I made any mistakes. I've had a long day but still wanted to share my thoughts.
What might have been and what has been point to one end, which is always present.
ama , we should be considering aspects out of Mariah's control - Mariah's not the most open/clear when it comes to her approach on vocal technique and day-to-day habits; the vocal abuse and strain she [or others] put herself under in the 1990s and 2000s is beginning to rear its ugly head now, whilst as she approaches [or experiences] the menopause she'll be experiencing some physiological changes these days which can't be easy to handle. Likely these issues have played a part in changes in tone and agility. There's only so much her beloved humidifiers and what not can do for her.
There's a harony B6 whistle in Melt Away's fadeout:
In various [like, all of the] live performances of I'll Be Lovin' You Long Time, Baronessa, there are G♯6 and B♭6 whistle notes:
Involuntary physiological changes is fair enough, but reports of her drinking habits and sub-par diet (although, she's worked on the latter recently) suggest to me that a lot more of her vocal circumstances are in her control than is let on. Furthermore, her vocal strain has been showing as early as the Charmbracelet era, and her refusal to have her nodes removed because of some misguided beliefs about their effect on vocal registers will certainly make her decline even steeper if she doesn't do something about them.
Obviously, nodes are not the be-all-end-all of vocal disabilities, I think Mariah's difficulties mostly stem from the fact that she's just never bothered to adjust her technique as she got older. Her belts have always been pushy, she's always neglected nasal resonance, and that's worked fine so far, but the vocal excess she herself popularized will absolutely demand a very meticulous routine for taking care of your voice and a scrupulous technique. In my opinion, what she'd need to do in her current situation is learn how to manage the girth of her sound as she's going higher, because to me it's obvious that she can't support such a wide tone up there anymore and as such her belts end up having that 'crackly' quality to them above like C♯5. If I recall correctly the E♭5s in "With You" sound particularly nasty in that department.
The trademark excess airiness of her vocals is actually among one of her biggest vocal flaws technically speaking. When you're pushing too much air through your cords they eventually thicken so much it's hard to get phonation out of them, and presumably when Mariah is doing a show she's going to want to keep her tone up so she's pushing more and more air to get phonation out, which creates a precarious vicious circle as you can tell. Compounded by the fact that she hardly uses any twang or nasal resonance, making her occasionally sound extremely top-heavy, all of these factors are going to make it exponentially harder for her to belt high consistently. Doing that from concert to concert and going hoarse every night I imagine is absolutely devastating to her vocal health in the long run. In my opinion, she'd have to get out of that habit fast and learn how to apply cord compression, especially when mixing and belting. That, along with using more twang and nasal resonance, would create a much healthier balance in the end because less air will end up going through the appropriately compressed vocal cords. I do believe she has the talent to pull that off because her pure intuitive singing ability is off the charts, which correct and helpful information could only improve, as opposed to tangents about accessing your whistle register through nodes.
And cut out that damn wine, alcohol is among the worst things you can subject your vocal cords to.
The struggles listed here make perfect sense to me. If she were an opera singer, she'd be an assoluta, or soprano sfogato. She's arguably as much a contralto & a mezzo-soprano as she is a soprano, but like with Maria Callas, Diamanda Galás, Alison Goldfrapp, Mina Mazzini, and Yma Sumac (each with voices like this), the capacity to sing with such height, agility, and stark brightness as well as power & finesse becomes the prevailing means to type them. I actually relate to her vocal production a good deal. My tone changes all the time — when I sing, as well as when I speak. The voice is bifurcated, so the chest voice can descend into this rich, androgynous, even pseudo-baritonal & sometimes perishing color that delves deep into the third & second octaves, while the midrange is like a transit where anything from wispy murmurs to heavy mezzo-soprano belts can be used, segueing into a head voice that gets exceedingly bright yet remains connected even into "super head voice" and whistle. It's very hard to train & maintain because it defies most classifications, and it seems to operate in multiple interconnected ranges & "voices". It's by nature multifaceted, multilayered, and unpredictable. Likewise, if my experience is correct, maintenance has to be intuitive, and changes back & forth of tone & even tessitura / supported range, just by virtue of the variety of inflections that characterize the voice are to be expected & also navigated. It's an all-encompassing voice.
Well, Mariah would probably be relegated to mezzo-soprano roles at this point in her life. I'd also want to point out that the YouTube channel you linked is a notorious propagator of misleading descriptions for classical voice types.
More importantly, I doubt she's ever even practiced Bel Canto, so I figure it's highly inadvisable to speculate about questions regarding Mariah's voice type as that might lead down some potentially misleading paths. Classical understandings of voice types are extremely limited when considering contemporary voices, bearing in mind that Maria Callas was considered a soprano sfogato and her officially recognized vocal range is down to F♯3 up to E6 (although, that might require a more reliable citation), and Mariah has about an octave to spare for both ends. What is considered 'resonance' in classical voice types is also markedly different, like the aforementioned Maria Callas, I bet she has at least a few tones to spare for her low end, but she can't project those notes unamplified to the audience, so they end up being disregarded from her vocal range when deciding her roles. With this in mind, I have no idea how Mariah would be classified in that area of vocals, but I bet she'd feel rather out of her element amidst classically trained singers.
Voice types are by no means necessarily connected to any kinds of vocal disabilities or inhibitions. Voice types are merely roles and even those roles change for many singers intermittently, Pauline Viardot reportedly alternated between soprano and contralto roles. In contemporary vocals it is a far more prevalent goal to access the different registers of the voice smoothly in order to gain range, as opposed to refining a very limited area of one's voice to fit a part in an opera, and I think that relates to Mariah's vocal difficulties to an extent as she's one of the main proprietors of extreme vocal range in popular music. She's brute-forced her way through a lot of key factors in vocals (she allegedly even composes without sheet music) as I elaborated previously and in my opinion, the lack of a foundation for her technique is what is causing her aleatory vocal tone; even her more legendary flubs could have been avoided had she invested in having more of a 'base' for her singing to come back to during an off-night. I believe that combining her melodic and vocal intuition with the theoretical savvy of a good vocal coach could seriously help Mariah in aging gracefully going forward, as opposed to any causative-correlative pseudoscience about voice types.
It's because of the counterfactual fallacies, that follow from the line of thinking that classical voice types can be applied into contemporary vocals, which have had me contemplating removing voice types from my threads altogether.