Listen closely, and you’ll hear Aaliyah’s voice getting louder all the time.
This week, DMX growled his scorn for the posthumous album Drake has announced is in the works, joining a chorus of disapproval from the late R&B singer’s family and former collaborators. The controversy erupted last month when Drake dropped a new track featuring previously unreleased vocals and confirmed rumors of the full-length project. Days earlier, Chris Keating of Yeasayer had cited her alongside David Bowie as a major influence on the Brooklyn band’s new album. In recent years following her death in a 2001 plane crash, Aaliyah has been covered by The XX, sampled by James Blake, J. Cole, and Azealia Banks, and shouted out by many others.
The reasons she persists are as varied as the artists who’ve turned to Aaliyah for inspiration. Part of it’s her voice, and part of it’s the way she innovated.
Before she died 11 years ago, few others sounded like her; today, though, the rest of the music world seems to be finally catching up.
From the Atlantic.
I don’t buy this argument. Liking Aaliyah isn’t the same as sounding like Aaliyah (nor is liking Aaliyah anything new). They may be fans, but Drake, J. Cole, Yeasayer, Azealia Banks, Beach House, Frank Ocean and frankly about a half dozen other artists cited in this article aren’t building on her music in any meaningful way, and few of them would claim to be.