Aaliyah’s estate is criticizing what it calls an “unscrupulous endeavor” to release the late singer’s music on streaming services.
The “Rock the Boat” performer’s label Blackground Records 2.0, in partnership with Empire, will be re-releasing her “One in a Million” album on Aug. 20; the Romeo Must Die soundtrack on Sept. 3; her “Aaliyah” album on Sept. 10; and the compilations “I Care 4 U” and “Ultimate Aaliyah” on Oct. 8.
The label started a social media campaign with the hashtag #Aaliyahiscoming and launched the website aaliyahiscoming.com to promote the upcoming album drops.
Related Story: Biz Markie Remembered as a True Friend at New York Funeral
Baby Girl is coming to Spotify ? pic.twitter.com/1fDcB6HvaE
— Spotify (@Spotify) August 5, 2021
The Estate of Aaliyah, which includes the singer’s mother Diane and brother Rashad, blasted plans to release her music in a statement Wednesday on Instagram.
“Protecting Aaliyah’s legacy is, and will always be our focus. For 20 years we have battled behind the scenes, enduring shadowy tactics of deception with unauthorized projects targeted to tarnish,” the statement began.
“We have always been confused as to why there is such a tenacity in causing more pain alongside what we already have to cope with for the rest of our lives. 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,” the estate added.
“Although we will continue to defend ourselves and her legacy lawfully and justly, we want to preempt the inevitable attacks on our character by all the individuals who have emerged from the shadows to leech off of Aaliyah’s life’s work. Ultimately, we desire closure and a modicum of peace so we can facilitate the 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 singer’s estate used the hashtag #IStandWithAaliyah across social media to bring attention to the unauthorized projects.
Aaliyah died in a plane crash at the age of 22 in 2001. Since then, only some of her earlier music and debut album have been made available on streaming services.