Google Images: Aaliyah One in a Million cover 1996
August 27th 1996 Aaliyah releases her second album "One In Million"
August 25th 2016, was the 15th year anniversary of Aaliyah and her nine crew members passing away in a plane crash in the bahamas 2001. Fifteen year later on this day the fans around world reflected, celebrated and played her music, shared their favorite moments and pictures of Aaliyah. I am a fan and been one since 1994, since the year of her debut album "Age Ain't Nothing But A Number".
It had singles such as "Back and Forth, At Your Best, and the title track AANBAN. And then around the fall of 1994 news circulated that 15 year old Aaliyah and 27 year old R.Kelly had gotten married. Aaliyah debut album came with a lot of steam and momentum, but the scandal had over shadowed what was a great project from the young singer.
So around mid 1995 Aaliyah kinda fell back and focused on her studies at her hometown in Detroit MI. Keep in mind this is before the social media, TMZ and music streaming. There were no talks of Aaliyah working her on second album, or any surprise album releases.
Summer of 1996 comes around, I was enjoying it and getting ready to start high school in September. Back then MTV and BET was still playing videos. There was also a video station called The Box, a channel where videos could be selected by the viewers by calling the the 1-900 # and selecting a code for their favorite video and then the video would be played.
Two years early in 1994 I went through an similar video experience of seeing a mysterious girl with long hair and sun glasses. It was Aaliyah standing in a door way at a gym and then the music drop from "Back &Forth"; I was forever changed. Here it is 1996 and once again watching the Box, and this time it's a black and white video where there is a group of people who rolls up on motorcycles and step inside a club.
It's Aaliyah, hair is longer and she was two years older and no longer have R.Kelly lurking in the shadows on this upcoming album cover. The song that was playing was called "If Your Girl Only Knew", the production was funky and slick, I thought first single was tight. I was digging it off what I assumed to be a single coming from a second album.
August 27th 1996 was the debut of Aaliyah second album "One In A Million" this time around she came with production of upcoming producers Timbaland & Missy, they handled a bulk of the album production and laced the hell out of it. Tim production was a sound that was not heard in R&B and hip-hop during this time period.
Aaliyah, Tim and Missy came with a new wave in the sound of R&B music and it has not been the same since. When the title track dropped with the video. I then realized Aaliyah was not playing any games, her vocals over that beat were nice. I was super excited to the hear the full album. And of course I got it and when I heard the whole album it was well received by me and added into my budding music collection at the time.
This album produced multiple singles such as "One in a million, Hot like fire, 4 page letter, the one I gave my heart to, If your girl only knew and the remake of Marvin Gaye's Got to give up (international release only)". This album saw a long life on the charts, from 1996-1998, One in a million singles was still climbing on the charts.
This was dope coming of age album from an artist such as Aaliyah, we saw her potential and growth on this album, she was in transition of leaving her late teens and going into adult hood. During the OIAM era, Aaliyah released songs outside this project. For movie SDTK, Dr. Do Little "Are You That Somebody and Disney's Anastasia SDTK "Journey To The Past"
Five years after the release of "One In A Million" Aaliyah's third and final album was released, as I look back on the summer of 1996 and the month of August. I would have never imagined that this particular month would forever be sealed in my mind as Aaliyah Month. It the same month she released an R&B gem is also the same month she lost her life two days before the fifth anniversary of her second album.
R.I.P Aaliyah Dana Haughton: Gone way too soon!!!!!!!
Google Images: Back of the CD for One In A Million