That time I was a Mariah Carey fan surrounded by Guns n’ Roses fans.

imageToday’s question from WordPress’ Daily Prompt reminds me of a time I was completely out of my element.

The Daily Prompt asks:

“A song comes on the radio and instantly, you’re transported to a different time and place. Which song(s) bring back memories for you and why? Be sure to mention the song, and describe the memory it evokes.”

There are so many songs from the 80s and 90s that transport me back in time, but if I had to choose, I would say Vision of Love by Mariah Carey (or, quite honestly, any songs from her first two albums) takes me back like few other songs or albums.

And every time I think about Mariah Carey I can’t help but remember an experience I had while living in Simi Valley, California.

The year was 1991. Mariah Carey’s second album (Emotions) was to be released on September 17th and a local record store was opening their doors at midnight on the morning of September 17th so fans could be the first to purchase the music of another band whose album was releasing that day. That band was Guns n’ Roses.

Growing up listening to the likes of Run DMC, Anita Baker, Luther Vadross, and New Edition, I naturally hated rock music. But it was not beneath me to use this record store’s event so that I could be one of the first people to get my hands on Mariah Carey’s new CD.

So when I claimed my spot in line at the record store shortly before midnight, I was obviously the only Mariah Carey fan in a sea of long hair, pot breath, and denim jackets (sorry GnR fans, it’s how I remember it).

When the doors opened at midnight, everyone headed to the Guns n’ Roses rack while I grabbed the Mariah Carey album. Needless to say, I didn’t have to fight anyone for it.

I proudly marched to the register and handed over the CD and a fist full of cash. By the look on the cashier’s face, you’d have thought I was turning in my man card. When the transaction was done I got out of there before my dirty deed was discovered and caused a riot.

To this day, Mariah Carey has no idea that one of her fans from almost a quarter century ago risked life and limb to be the first in Simi Valley to buy her album.

I no longer listen to Mariah Carey (and I still don’t listen to Guns n’ Roses), but that September night in 1991 will forever remain a fond memory.