More Than A Million: Aaliyah’s Music Re-released

Photo courtesy of Erik McClean.

It has been years since Aaliyah Haughton’s music has been available to the public. Though Haughton has managed to keep her R&B presence years beyond her death, it has been a challenge to reach a younger demographic of listeners who have never heard of the singer. Another challenge has been posed against her fanbase who have been led astray with inconsistent dates of her signature albums releasing, lack of follow-up dates for these albums releasing, and much more.

A surprise Instagram post from the Estate of Aaliyah Haughton made the day of many fans of the late singer.

On August 4, The Estate of Aaliyah Haugton released a statement that said, “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.

“Ultimately, we desire closure and a modicum of peace so we can facilitate growth of the Aaliyah Memorial Fund and other creative projects that embody Aaliyah’s true essence, which is to inspire strength and positivity for people of all creeds, races, and cultures around the world,” the statement concluded.

Haughton died at age 22 in a plane crash in August 2001, making 2021 the 20th anniversary of the singer’s death. Through these many years, her estate has been engaged in a dispute with Blackground Records 2.0 about the release of Haughton’s music. The company is a relaunch of a label co-founded by Barry Hankerson, who is Haughton’s uncle, former manager, and label chief. Hankerson has possessed all of Haughton’s masters up until this point, while the state controls her catalog.

Blackground 2.0 has been criticized by Haughton’s estate for a “gross lack of transparency” and the accusation that he failed to alert the estate of his plans to release the music to streaming platforms, according to Billboard. Since the accusation, Blackground offered in their response that payments have been made to the estate as recent as this year and assures the estate will receive everything that is entitled to receive pursuant to the terms of their agreement. 

As of August 20, Haughton’s “One in A Million” is now available on streaming platforms and launched into the Top 10 of the Rolling Stones 200, made number one on US iTunes, and more. By the end of this year, all of Haughton’s albums will arrive on streaming platforms for all to enjoy. The projects span from the soundtrack for the 2000 film “Romeo Must Die” (out on September 3), her self-titled album (out on September 10), and the compilations “I Care 4 U” and “Ultimate Aaliyah” (out on October 8th).