Mariah Carey's a little annoyed that she's going to travel by bus instead of plane on her upcoming tour — but not for the reasons you might expect.
The singer actually prefers ground transit: Air travel is too dehydrating, and sleep is easier on a bus than on a jet. So what's her problem? She's unhappy that she doesn't have time to decorate the vehicle "Chez Mimi."
"I wanted my bus to be pink, yet lavender," Carey said. "The rolling crib. But I'm going to design a bus eventually. I think all the girls are going to want it because it'll be like a girl's dream bus — the beauty area will be amazing. I can do one for the guys, too. I'm just good with the designing thing."
For now, Carey is happy just to design the content of the tour itself — titled The Adventures of Mimi: The Voice, the Hits, the Tour — since she and the musical director, "American Idol" judge Randy Jackson, are currently planning precisely how the show will go on. While Jackson said on Friday's "Larry King Live" that Madonna's show had inspired him, Carey insists the pair are batting around ideas that aren't as focused on making her stage show "over-the-top theatrical" as they are about "the music, the songs and connecting with the fans."
"Here's the thing," Carey explained. "A lot of people just do their new stuff, and I can do that, but I'm the kind of person who hates to disappoint people, and there are just some people who won't be happy unless they hear a specific song: 'If I don't hear "Fantasy," I'm going to be mad.' So I'm trying to take certain songs that are, dare I say, classics, to new places."
That means Carey's hits, such as "Dreamlover," for instance, will be given a sort of remix treatment, "with me singing on top of any beat the DJ wants," she said. Carey noted that the mixes will vary regionally, changing as the tour travels across the country (it begins on August 5 in Miami; see "Mariah Carey Plots Mimi's Touring Adventure"). It also means that a mixture of hits and deep album cuts could be featured in a "hot medley"; Mariah has mentioned "One Sweet Day," "My All," and "Close My Eyes" as possibilities.
"The concept is to make them newer," she said. "Some songs you don't need to touch, like 'Vision of Love,' we kind of keep that one basic. But we're going way back, and it's not necessarily all #1 hits."
Since Carey's focus is on giving the fans what they want, the singer went so far as to name her tour after a fan's suggestion, which was based on a diary-like book the fan had kept of Mimi's, well, adventures. "There was a letter I wrote to Oprah in it, thanking her for the Legends weekend, and there was a paper about me in it that this girl got an 'A' on," Carey recalled. "And all these little indicators said to me, 'This is the right name for the tour.' Things like that affect me.
"The title does kind of say it all," she continued. "It's like, OK, 'the Emancipation' meant one thing, that was kind of one experience, and now it's going to be a fun adventure for me — to go around the country on this tour bus, meet the fans, and kind of experience the world in a different way. I don't want to get too dramatic, [like] 'It's a journey through my life,' but it is. It's like a party-meets-a-journey-meets-a-show. And I'll probably get a lot of inspiration as a writer from that."