Mariah Carey never played Monroe piano

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Mariah Carey

Mariah Carey

Despite owning Marilyn Monroe's iconic white piano, Mariah Carey has never even touched it.

Mariah Carey has never played Marilyn Monroe's piano.

The 'Hero' hitmaker has always been a huge fan of the late actress, and though she owns her famous white instrument - which was reportedly bought for the screen icon by her mother when she was a child - she has never "touched" it.

Asked why she chose to buy the piano out of all the Monroe memorabilia that has been sold, she said: "That was the only thing that she had from her childhood. I haven't touched it--I won't even tune it.

"I could've bought the dress, the 'Mr. President' dress. But I'd rather maintain what she cared about.

"You know that her production company was the first female-owned production company in Hollywood? She paved the way for women in a lot of ways that a lot of people don't think about. She was so 'the sex symbol' that it looks like the opposite, but she really wasn't that."

When it comes to her own work, the 46-year-old singer thinks people don't realise how much involvement she has in writing her music.

She told Complex magazine: "We create the bed of music that I'm going to sing over [together].

"People don't really get what that means unless you do it. They think, 'OK, so she probably writes the lyrics.' No, I write the lyrics, the melody, and the music with [producers].

"I'm not a piano player--I can play a little bit--but I really like to help mould whoever's playing."

And one of her collaborators, producer James Poyser, was impressed by how in control she was from their first meeting to work on her 2005 track 'Mine Again'

He recalled: "You never know what somebody is like. Are you gonna get along? Is it gonna be a cool experience? Is it gonna be weird? There's a lot of weird, uncool artists in the music industry.

"I was sitting in the studio for a while and then there was a bustle of activity. You could just feel a whirlwind enter the room - I'm like, 'Oh boy, here it comes.' And then she comes into the room with me and is absolutely the coolest person.

"She says, 'Hi,' pulls up a chair right next to me, and we start writing. It was almost like she knew exactly what the song was gonna be instantly. Like, she knew what she wanted and in a way grabbed my hand and walked me toward it. That's the thing that stuck with me. You could see that she knew."

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