culture

Aaliyah's Catalog Set to Hit Streaming Services

By Stereo Williams

Aaliyah's music catalog is reportedly coming to streaming services.

Blackground Records, founded by the producer Barry Hankerson, has said that 17 albums will be released from its back catalog over the next two months. Those projects will be released via streaming services, on CD and vinyl. This will include the majority of Aaliyah’s output — including celebrated albums One in a Million and Aaliyah, as well as the Romeo Must Die soundtrack and two posthumous collections. There are also albums from Toni Braxton, Timbaland, JoJo and Tank.

Since Aaliyah's tragic death in 2001 in a plane crash at the age of 22, her music has been hailed as wildly influential and the singer's persona has been celebrated by a generation of R&B and pop fans. But, outside of her debut album (controlled by Jive Records, not Hankerson's Blackground), her music has never been available on streaming platforms until now.  Blackground's announcement explained they’d inked a deal with distributor EMPIRE to begin releasing Aaliyah’s catalog.

But the late singer's family posted a statement on the official Aaliyah social media accounts.

“Now, in this 20th year, this unscrupulous endeavor to release Aaliyah’s music without any transparency or full accounting to the estate compels our hearts to express a word – forgiveness. Although we will continue to defend ourselves and her legacy lawfully and justly, we want to preempt the inevitable attacks on our character by all the individuals who have emerged from the shadows to leech off of Aaliyah’s life’s work."