/  09.10.2021


Aaliyah’s 1996 double-platinum sophomore album, One in a Million, appeared on streaming platforms for the first time a few weeks ago, delighting fans who for decades have begged for more access to the late singer’s catalog. But the journey to its debut on streaming services, which comes nearly 20 years after the singer’s death at just 22, has been a roller coaster for sure. Aaliyah is celebrated as a pioneering force in R&B and pop. But much of the music that shaped that legacy — including One in a Million and the self-titled album she released the month before her death in a 2001 plane crash — has been quite absent in the streaming era. As the saying goes, “better late than never,” and today (Sept 10) the singer’s self titled album has become available on all streaming platforms.

Courtesy of @AaliyahDailyx | Twitter

As a 2016 Complex article outlined, the reason has never been entirely clear why it took so long; the masters for those recordings have always been in the control of Aaliyah’s uncle, entertainment lawyer-turned-music producer Barry Hankerson. Billboard reported earlier last month that Hankerson’s label Blackground Records, signed a distribution deal with Empire, a breakout distribution company and record label, clearing the way for the singer’s last two albums and several treasured singles to be released at long last.

In the seven years before her death, she recorded music that helped define the 90s r&b scene, and her legacy can still be felt and heard in music today. Her influence is undoubtedly everywhere and with her albums coming to streaming services, a lot of people are being reminded of this.

There is not a day that goes by where Aaliyah isn’t missed by her family, friends and fans. Special moments like the re-release of Aaliyah should make you appreciate the art and what she gave to the game even more.

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