name Aaliyah means “highest, most exalted one”. Some might think that naming your child
such a name was very strong, but for her parents Michael and Diane Haughton knew from the
start that their baby daughter had the makings of a real star.
At an early age her talents had been noticeable, when Aaliyah was five years old, the
Haughton family left Brooklyn behind and moved to a new home in Detroit. Impressed by her
incredible musical talent, decided to enroll her in vocal classes. When she wasn’t learning sing-
ing in the classroom, Aaliyah was singing up a storm wherever possible, including church plays
and the church choir.
Around the age of nine she started going on the move, auditioning for television produc-
tions and record companies. She also appeared on the national television talent show, Star
Search. Unfortunately, Aaliyah didn’t win first place, but she gained much experience working
in front of an larger audience.
Things started to get even better, by the age of fourteen, Aaliyah signed her first record
contract with Blackground Enterprises in 1994. She was the first act to sign with Blackground
label. Her first album, titled “Age Ain’t Nothing But A Number” was most produced by the
R&B singer R. Kelly (who she was rumored to have married at only 15 years of age, but both
parties later denied the allegations), was released in 1994 and went double platinum.
In support of her first album Aaliyah has been touring different places and concert ap-
pearances all over the world. For her second album, Aaliyah decided to work with a with multi-
ple producers and songwriters in putting her album, “One in a Million”, together. Her main col-
laborator on the album was “Timbaland”, one of the hottest producers in hip-hop music.
With this second album, Aaliyah would score her first number one single “If Your Girl
Only Knew” and she established herself as a multi-platinum artist. In 1997 Aaliyah graduated
from Detroit High School for Fine and Performing Arts but postponed college because her ca-
reer was occupying almost all of her time.
In 2000, Aaliyah made her acting debut in the movie “Romeo Must Die” her first major
acting job, co-starring Jackie Chan. Her single for the movie, “Try Again”, became her first
number one hit on the pop charts. She also made a leading role as Queen Akasha, “the original
vampire” in the movie “Queen of the Dammed” which was released in 2001.
Aaliyah also released the album “I Care 4 U” in 1998 and “Aaliyah” in 2001. Aaliyah
performed songs for the soundtracks of several motion pictures, including Anastasia which she
had an Oscar nomination and Dr. Dolittle earning her an Grammy nomination, and was featured
on tracks for albums of fellow performers NAS, Miss “Misdemeanor” Elliot, and Ginuwine.
Aaliyah has won many awards during her career for example, MTV video Music
Award, Best Female Video for “Try Again” in 2001 at the American Music Awards, favorite
soul/R&B female artist, favorite soul/R&B album for “Aaliyah” in 2001, favorite soul/R&B
female artist Source Award, and female R&B artist of the year in 2003.
In 2001, Aaliyah was in the Bahamas shooting a music video for her single “Rock the
Boat”, off her third album. After completion, Aaliyah and eight others boarded a small plane to
travel back to the United States. Not long after takeoff, the plane crashed, and Aaliyah died
instantly. There were no survivors. Bahamian authorities said that the cause of the crash was
because the plane was overloaded with sound and video equipment. An autopsy done on the
pilot revealed that he had minute traces of cocaine and alcohol in his system.
A glass paneled carriage towed by a pair of tan horses brought Aaliyah’s silver coffin
from the Frank...