Glance at a picture of Aaliyah in 2001. If you’re staring at the right one, you’ll notice something, it’s timeless. If there is any indication that Aaliyah was ahead of her time, it shows in her photos. The long silk jet-black hair, smooth skin and darling dimples were just half of what won America over. Let’s not forget the 2000 MTV Video Music Awards when Aaliyah showed up wearing an ageless tiger-striped Roberto Cavalli gown that can still be worn today. Not much seemed outdated about Aaliyah.
Fashion sense aside, at the time of her untimely death, the singer, at 22 years old was a superstar in two different mediums, in the box office and on the Billboard charts. She had just enjoyed the success of her feature film Romeo Must Die which scored over $91 million dollars and just released her self-titled album Aaliyah. In the midst of the undeniable success, her death intervened, forcing her second film Queen of the Damned to be a posthumous release. The entertainment industry suffered severely when Aaliyah died. “Every time I was around her, she just seemed like the perfect person, she was already an angel living down here,” describes rapper Lil Kim who shared a friendship with Aaliyah.
Singing since she was 6 and taking lessons since she was 9, by the time Aaliyah was 15, she was ready to make history. The height of her success sparked at 22, the age where most of us are taking an entry-level job position after college and still trying to figure life out, Aaliyah had already mastered her craft.
To name a few, Drake and DMX are the two notable rappers that have had no problems pouring out their sincere emotions for the star. “I remember getting the news that you had passed and it connected with my heart like a clean shot from Muhammad Ali. I was crushed. Not only was I one of your biggest fans but I was truly in love with you” penned Drake last year on Aaliyah’s 9th anniversary. “I hope I make the right life choices so I can end up in heaven where I know you rest your head,” Drake adds.
DMX who not only worked with Aaliyah in Romeo Must Die, but also released a single with the singer called "Back in One Piece." DMX read a poem that he wrote for Aaliyah during a BET broadcast tribute after her death. The same poem was used in the being of a tribute music video that he later did, “Dearest, sweet Aaliyah. I have trouble accepting the fact that you're gone. So I won't. It will be like we went for a while without seeing each other. But I can understand why God would have wanted you close to him. Cause you truly were an angel on earth. In my own special way, I love you and miss you.”