ca. 2001 --- Aaliyah --- Image by © Adam Weiss/Corbis Outline

Aaliyah was born on January 16, 1979 in Brooklyn, New York. At the tender age of 10, the alluring starlet appeared on Star Search which later landed her a contract with Jive Records at 12 years old. Capturing our hearts with sounds from Age Ain’t Nothing But A Number, produced by R. Kelly, you could hear the potential of stardom. With hits like “Back & Forth,” and “Age Ain’t Nothing But A Number.”

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When I first heard Aaliyah’s “Back & Forth” I instantly was drawn to her angelic voice. Her talent was greatly accepted as the R&B sector was in need of a fresh newcomer. Coining her brand as “sweet, but street,” Aaliyah set standards for herself forcing record companies to value her success. The sexy tomboy of sultry sounds remained true to her aesthic rocking crop tops, baggy pants, and fly shades. Making her the ambassador for Sportswear Chic. In 1998 she ranked #1 on the R&B charts with the track “Are You That Somebody” for the Dr. Dolittle soundtrack.  With hot producers like Missy Elliot and Timbaland in her corner, her career was destined for new heights.

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Her futuristic sound was the per cursor for artist to come and would soon inspire the next generation of singers over ten years later.  On August 25, 2001 after shooting “Rock The Boat,” Aaliyah along with several others fell victim to a horrific plane crash. Dancers, directors, and assistants were shocked to find the bodies of the artist and crew lifeless, after shortly just saying their goodbyes. Aaliyah’s death touched souls across the globe, as her short lived famed was on the rise of becoming legend. Proof of cross-over appeal, upon her late death the artist played in two box-office hits, Romeo Must Die, and Queen of the Dammed. Both made record number in opening weeks. Now her spirit lives on with new comers embracing her style, sound, and momentum.