The first of American recording artist Aaliyah's albums was produced when she was just fourteen years old. As the youngest artist of her type at the time, she was an actress and model from Brooklyn, New York. Raised in Detroit, Michigan, she first appeared on the “Star Search” television show and performed with Gladys Knight at twelve years old. Her uncle, Barry Hankerson, of Blackground Records, introduced her to R. Kelly. Kelly became her mentor and a lead songwriter and producer of the debut album “Age Ain't Nothing but a Number.” Despite the singer’s untimely death, all of her music has remained popular.
“Age Ain't Nothing but a Number” - Aaliyah recorded her first album at the age of fourteen with the help of producer and mentor, R. Kelly. The album peaked at number eighteen on Billboard, selling over three million copies in the United States. The debut single "Back and Forth" topped the Billboard charts for three weeks, finally becoming Gold certified. The title track of this debut Aaliyah album peaked at number 75 on the Hot 100, while "The Thing I Like" became part of the 1994 film “A Low Down Dirty Shame" soundtrack.
“One in a Million” - Released in 1996, it was Aaliyah's second Aaliyah album after signing with Atlantic Records. Working with record producers Missy Elliott and Timbaland, the first album single became popular as an organ based, snappy tune which topped charts for two weeks. "If Your Girl Only Knew" introduced Aaliyah as a songstress who was fast becoming known for her smooth, seductive singing. It also produced the "Hot like Fire" and "4 Page Letter" hit singles.
“Romeo Must Die” - Released in 2001, this soundtrack album came into being as a result of the singer’s first major movie film role. As an adaptation of William Shakespeare's “Romeo and Juliet”, the film starred Aaliyah with martial artist Jet Li. Aaliyah served as an executive producer of the film soundtrack, contributing four songs. The music video from the album won MTV's Best Female Video and Best Video in 2000. This Aalliyah album also garnered a Best Female R&B Vocalist award nomination. The soundtrack sold 1.5 million U.S. copies.
- “Aaliyah” - After completing “Romeo Must Di,,” the next Aaliyah album started production in July 2001. The album, produced by Timbaland, debuted at number two on Billboard’s 200. It sold 187,000 copies in the first week. The first single, "We Need a Resolution", peaked at number 59 on Billboard’s Hot 100.
Aaliyah was killed in a tragic airplane crash on August 25, 2001, at only 22 years of age. Immediately following her death, her third and final studio album “Aaliyah” reached number one on Billboard’s 200 and was subsequently certified double Platinum, selling 2.95 million copies in the U.S. Aaliyah’s albums continue the artist’s legacy, with profits donated to the Aaliyah Memorial Fund.