Mariah penned this song during a tough period. "I wrote TRIUMPHANT when I was going through a difficult time & it helped me get through it," she tweeted. The song features rappers Rick Ross and Meek Mill.
The singer co-wrote and co-produced the song with frequent collaborator Jermaine Dupri, and producer/songwriter Bryan Michael Cox. Other Carey tunes penned by the trio include her 2005 hit singles "We Belong Together
"and "Shake It Off
" plus her 2010 Christmas track, "Oh! Santa
Carey said regarding the contribution of the two rappers: "Meek adds an excitement, a newness to the record that is pretty rare right now. Working with Ross and Meek on the same record was incredible. Obviously, Ross is a star and everybody loves him. I'm a fan of his music. I really, really wanted to work with him. I love the tone of his voice. I think the contrast of his voice and mine would be something special. I always like to do collaborations that people might think are different."
Bryan Michael Cox told MTV News the two rappers were perfect additions to the song, not only because of their talent, but also their personal closeness to its themes. "I think that Rick Ross is resilient, and Meek Mill [is] a new hot rapper, who's really hot, one of my favorite new Hip-Hop artists," the co-producer explained. "Rick Ross, who's always been one of my favorites, he's resilient. I think that, through the years, people try to count him out, and he always comes back, comes back harder, comes back with bigger and better records. So I think that the theme of 'Triumphant,' I think that he fits the theme of that whole concept the best, really, because through it all, Rick Ross always comes out on top."
Along with the Hip-Hop version of the track featuring Rick Ross and Meek Mill, Carey simultaneously released a "vintage throwback remix" and "pulse club mix." During a Def Jam conference call with media, Carey's manager Randy Jackson, explained: "The vintage throwback mix will remind fans of remixes she did years ago, and she's had a lot of Billboard #1 dance hits as well. She went in and re-sang the vocals, knowing that the two verses on this first version of this single with Meek and Ross were going to be hip-hop verses where people were rapping. We wanted to have something for all of her fans."
Carey's husband, Nick Cannon, was hospitalized twice in early 2012 firstly after suffering from mild kidney failure, then from blood clots in his lungs. Shortly afterwards, Cannon announced that he was diagnosed with an autoimmune disease called lupus nephritis, which was the cause of his kidney problems. Jackson noted during the conference call that the song was inspired by Cannon's struggles with ill health. "It's really about having it succeed, and people are hearing it," he said.
The song's music video was shot on July 29 and July 30, 2012, in New York City and directed/produced by Nick Cannon. Actor Eric West co-stars in the boxing-themed visual, which also features Carey as a ring girl, Meek Mill as the triumphant fighter and Rick Ross as his promoter. In addition, DJ Khaled can be seen cheering Mill on.