A Diva Takes A Dive

She strips on MTV! Has nervous breakdown! For Mariah Carey, it's what becomes a legend most

Diva means goddess. All right, the word is as goofily overblown for a female vocal star as "artist" is for any punk with a record contract. But as a job description, "diva" carries certain burdens. One must not only sing one's heart out; one must expose it to the harshest elements. What becomes a legend most? Suffering. A childhood of deprivation; liaisons with powerful, possibly dangerous men; career triumph soured by personal despair. A life of melodrama makes the diva more human, thus more godlike, to her fans. A catchy moniker helps: Callas...Garland...Lady Day...Whitney. The singer in the news last week...

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