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Aaliyah

A star in the R&B world before she was even out of her teens, Aaliyah's promising career was tragically cut short by her death in a plane crash at age 22. Even with only three albums under her belt, she'd already earned a place as a talented trendsetter among the R&B elite. Following a successful transition to a more mature image, Aaliyah played a major role in popularizing the stuttering, futuristic production style that consumed hip-hop and urban soul in the late '90s. Her work with Timbaland, especially, was some of the most forward-looking R&B of its time, even while the competing neo-soul movement was gaining prominence. Aaliyah's death came on the heels of her third and most accomplished album, making it especially unfortunate that she was robbed of a chance to continue her creative development.

Aaliyah Dana Haughton was born January 16, 1979, in Brooklyn, and named after a Swahili word meaning "most exalted one." Her uncle, Barry Hankerson, was a manager and entertainment lawyer who was married to Gladys Knight for a time, and her mother, also a singer, enrolled Aaliyah in voice lessons before she'd even started school. Still very young, she moved with her family to Detroit, where she sang in several school plays. At age nine, she successfully auditioned for the TV show Star Search, where she performed "My Funny Valentine" (and lost). Two years later, thanks to her uncle Hankerson's connections, she spent five nights in Las Vegas performing as part of Gladys Knight's revue. In addition to his niece, Hankerson was also managing a rising R&B star named R. Kelly, and introduced the two in 1992. Kelly soon took Aaliyah under his wing and began writing and producing songs for her.

Aaliyah's debut album, Age Ain't Nothing but a Number, was released in the summer of 1994 and quickly became a platinum-selling hit on the strength of two smash singles, "Back & Forth" and "At Your Best (You Are Love)" (the latter an Isley Brothers cover). Both songs hit the pop Top Ten and went gold, and "Back & Forth" went all the way to number one on the R&B charts, while "At Your Best" fell one spot short. Late in the year, Aaliyah found herself at the center of controversy when rumors spread that the 15-year-old singer had married Kelly, who was more than ten years her senior. Although both camps were resolutely tight-lipped, documents later confirmed that the two had wed in the state of Illinois that August and gotten an annulment shortly thereafter. By the time the media buzz died down, the two had parted ways both personally and creatively.

In 1996, Aaliyah released her follow-up album, One in a Million, which signaled a newly emerging maturity. She worked with several different producers, most notably Timbaland, who co-wrote several tracks with his songwriting partner, Missy "Misdemeanor" Elliott (soon to become a solo star in her own right). Several of these -- "If Your Girl Only Knew," "One in a Million," "4 Page Letter" -- became hits, with "If Your Girl Only Knew" going all the way to the top of the R&B charts. The Diane Warren-penned ballad "The One I Gave My Heart To" was also a Top Ten R&B hit, and One in a Million wound up going double platinum. In the meantime, Aaliyah graduated from high school (in 1997) and contributed several songs to film soundtracks. "Journey to the Past," from Anastasia, was nominated for an Oscar, and in early 1998 she had a major hit with "Are You That Somebody?" from Eddie Murphy's Dr. Dolittle (in which she also made a cameo appearance).

Aaliyah took her time recording a follow-up, and put the process completely on hold to start an acting career. She co-starred with martial-arts master Jet Li and rapper DMX in 2000's urban Shakespeare adaptation Romeo Must Die, and her accompanying soundtrack single, "Try Again," became her first number one hit on the pop charts that summer. Aaliyah subsequently completed filming on the Anne Rice vampire flick Queen of the Damned, playing the title role as a vampire queen, and was cast in a prominent role in the two sequels to The Matrix. Plus, she finally finished her long-awaited third album, with Timbaland again handling the most prominent tracks. Released in the summer of 2001, Aaliyah completed the singer's image overhaul into a sensual yet sensitive adult. The record received excellent reviews, and the first single, "We Need a Resolution," was a Top 20 R&B hit.

About a month after the album's release, Aaliyah traveled to the Bahamas to film a video for its second single, "Rock the Boat." On August 25, she and several members of the crew boarded a small twin-engine Cessna plane returning to the mainland. The plane crashed shortly after takeoff, exploding on impact; Aaliyah and seven other passengers were killed instantly, and the ninth later died at a Nassau hospital. Investigations into the crash showed that the plane had been loaded far past its weight capacity, and that pilot Luis Morales had recently been arrested for crack cocaine possession (traces of which, along with alcohol, were found in his system); furthermore, the charter company, Blackhawk International Airways, had not authorized him to pilot the craft in question. Naturally, the R&B community reacted with an outpouring of shock and sorrow, and Aaliyah became the singer's only chart-topping album, eventually going double platinum. "Rock the Boat" and "More Than a Woman" were both posthumous Top Ten hits on the R&B chart, and Queen of the Damned was a commercial success upon its release in early 2002, topping the box office in its first week. As details continued to emerge from the plane crash investigation, Aaliyah's parents filed suit against Blackhawk Airways, Virgin Records, and several other companies. At the end of 2002, the posthumous album I Care 4 U entered the charts at number three; it mixed some of the singer's biggest hits with a selection of unreleased material. The title track was a Top 20 pop hit, and "Miss You" topped the R&B charts early the next year. ~ Steve Huey, Rovi
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Comments

R.I.P Aaliyah we'll always love your songs and you!
I miss you and I Love you!
I like this song one of my favorite song
I love this song rip
Now this woman was sexy rip
angalynn2003
rip
R.I.P AALIYAH MISS AND LUV U BABY GIRL :*
R.I.P Aaliyah, I miss you baby girl♥
R.I.P Aaliyah you are missed very much
I miss her awesome songs but at least she is in a better place now and not in this scary world where anything could happen
Great song listen folks
Be with out you for real damn im feelin this r.I.p...
tonywhite002 0
Rip Aaliyah
R.I.P A aliyah such beautiful woman
wiseabbey64
my heart cries 4 u
That's my girl and I still love her music
She is so pretty why did she die
Love the song she i legend
GAWDDD I miss YOU Aaliyah.
If Aaliyah hadn't passed away so tragically in that plane crash years ago I don't think that Beyoncé would be as big in the music industry as she is today. Aaliyah was beautiful and talented...o n c e she broke away from R Kelly things were headed in the right direction in her life. We miss you!
Miss u Aaliyah
She would have been Beyoncé right now. RIP, Aaliyah, your songs bring back so many memories. ❤️
R.i.p baby girl this is to Jason
lalailk
R.I.P Aaliyah u was taken way to soon and not in the right way for a beautiful woman like you, and you were to young;(
k-daniels
RIP Aaliyah people need to understand there are demons on this planet so its very possible these demonic demons took her just saying
lawrence_sin g l e t o n
Takes me back to the High School Days !
i love you so much cousin R.I.P
1.Kiss your hand
2.Say your crushes name
3.Close your hand
4.Pick a school day
5.Say your name
6.Post this on 15 more songs and the day that you chose is when your crush will ask you out
that's f**ked up what u said (solandnoopt i o n s ) r.i.p. aaliyah u was taken to soon.
solandnoopti o n s
R Kelly peed on her as well.
One In a Million
RIP BABY GIRL LOVE YOU FOREVER
Luv her
neva be forgotten rip
I agree awesome singer
npcg10
I always trip out when I remember how old she was when she died, its sooo sad! Such great talent =/
Miss her and her great talent! Lord only knows the truth....
LUV U GURL...R.I.P .
R.I.P Aaliyah
I don't really know aaliyah but I'm sorry that she died in that plane crash rip aaliyah
alilena08
This song is hard to find on YouTube what is it really called
Still play her songs today... Beyonce my girl but if Aaliyah was here it wouldn't be know Beyonce on the Top Charts.....m i s s ya RIP!
My language teacher always play this song but the instermental one
Right now im naughty naughty
Just imagine if she was still around!..Goo d Music!
SHE IS A ICON HER MUSIC STILL PLAYS MY FAV AGE AINT NUT BUT A NUMBER LUV THIS ALBUM
One of my favorites luv this song RIP we miss and luv u baby gurl....
This freaked me out This isn't fake. Apparently if you copy and paste this on ten comments you will have the best day of your life tomorrow. You will either get kissed or asked out. If you break the chain you will see a dead girl in your room tonight. In the next 53 minutes someone will say I love you or I'm sorry
Live your Life Love*978*3M 14Y~
That's sad that Aaliyah died. ���� she was awesome.
metsfan30339
LOVE THIS SONG!
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