Seven years ago, on August 25, 2001 — the music world lost one of its brightest up and coming stars. Aaliyah’s death affected me profoundly then, and still her shadow looms so large over the music scene now. Who can blame lesser emulators for trying to jack her swagger?

I just spent the evening browsing around YouTube, watching countless Aaliyah videos and wondering what could have been. There are some wonderful Aaliyah tributes out there, but I found myself becoming super depressed. It’s almost impossible for me to choose just one Aaliyah video. So here are three of my faves.

Hot Like Fire was my JAM back in 97, 98. Freshman year of college. Man, oh man. Memories.

At Your Best (You Are Love) can bring tears to my eyes to this very day. Aaliyah’s voice is so crystal clear and so sparklingly beautiful on that track. Love it.

And of course, One in a Million. That stuttering bass, her angelic voice floating over it. Your smile, your style, so fly, I can’t deny. This track never gets played out.

There were some cool online tributes to Aaliyah this past week. Fashionista 101 did a great Aaliyah-inspired beauty makeover. Her eye shadow blending skills are sick! Spinner did a clash of the cover songs, featuring Aaliyah’s original version of Are You That Somebody versus The Gossip’s cover. In tribute to Aaliyah, The Fader is featuring an exclusive freeload by DJ the Honorable Caps titled U R Missed. If you’re a fan, you should check it out.

Click here to visit the Aaliyah memorial fund. At just 22 years old, baby girl left us way too soon. I know I’m not alone in wondering what could have been.

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flygyrl72 says:
August 28, 2008, 12:31 am
Oh Bella! I usually always remember August 25th for her, but I forgot all about it this year. Thanks for reminding me. I'll never forget, I was in Chicago, out on a boat on Lake Michigan with my guy when the radio started talking about it. I remember just going to the nose of the speedboat & letting the wind hit my face & wash away the tears. I was so sad. And "One In A Million" is my favorite video by her. Love it. Thanks for this! She will be beautiful always.
J. Diva says:
August 28, 2008, 2:45 am
Although I never knew her personally, I knew she was beautiful and talented and will be missed truly! When I was younger, I always wanted to emulate her style. I even had the baggy track pants and midriff shirts, and used to rock a side part (hell, I still do). She was an icon, and she touched so many, especially in my hometown (I'm from the Detroit area). When she passed, it was like the whole city was in mourning. May she forever rest in peace and may her beautiful legacy live on through her music and her soul that she shared with those around her.
Hanna says:
August 28, 2008, 5:26 am
Such a talented special person gone too soon.
Mrs.Mckinzie says:
August 28, 2008, 7:11 am
RIP Aaliyah.
tracey in Ohio says:
August 28, 2008, 8:18 am
I always admired Aaliyah and thought she was simply beautiful. I remembered when she died, I was in a class for work & a woman sitting next to me said her plane crashed; it was like someone punched me in the stomach. Of course I didn't know her, but she was so young, eager & talented. And her makeup was something else speaking of her eye shadow which I thought was most beautiful in the video 'we need a resolution.' Even today, when I put her in rotation, I still cannot listen to 'I care 4 U.' without tears coming to my eyes. The words & knowing she's not around anymore are too much. R.I.P.
nikki says:
August 28, 2008, 8:39 am
Aaliyah was a rare jewel. She was talented, humble and genuine. I stil remember finding out that her plane had crashed and just being in shock. She was beautiful and will forever be truly missed. Fave songs: Hot Like Fire (remix), 4 Page Letter, Resolution, If Your Girl Only Knew and I Miss You.
DENISE says:
August 28, 2008, 8:42 am
Everytime i see Aaliyah I want to cry,Her music dominates my favorite playlists to this day. You know how we as women say stuff like "gosh she is pretty, I hate her!!!" LOL well This girl was a beauty,and her eyes were so disarming, you couldn't help but to love her. I miss her dearly. I cant watch the rock the boat video without feeling so upset, I find myself saying I hate the video!! saying "why couldnt she have done that on a beach in florida :( I know stupid thoughts, when its your time its your time.... Its just a life lesson I guess, you will always loose people to death, and Gods knows best he needs his most precious angels by his side. Love, Denise
Niki says:
August 28, 2008, 9:40 am
Still missing Aaliyah to this day! Beauty, class, talent and sweetness--at 22, her journey was only beginning and it was so sad to see it end way too soon. She really was on the verge of that kind of "megawatt" success and I just knew she was planning to do some interesting things musically in the future when she said in an interview that she was a fan of Nine Inch Nails. RIP Baby Girl!
Denise says:
August 28, 2008, 9:56 am
Thank you Bella! I was waiting to see and hear more tributes about her on Monday, but I didn't, like I usually have seen/heard in the past- so I'm going to check out the ones you have shared. Like most of the previous posters, I felt like I knew her too. I had just bought her last cd like the week before her accident and had been playing it non-stop. When I heard the news, I thought it was a twisted joke. She really was talented and innovative. I think it's really funny how people are still styling new artists after her and its's been 7 years. That's a testament to her freshness!!
Fullcomplexity says:
August 28, 2008, 9:40 am
I was a HUGE Aaliyah fan also. I was in my freshman year of college when she died. My boyfriend called me from his home and told me. I didn't believe him, so he went and got his dad to come to the phone and break the news. I was a mess! You would've thought I knew the girl! But we all did in a way. Her music connected her fans to her. She is still greatly missed. I try not to think of what could've been because then I too would get depressed. :( So, I turn on her music, watch her videos (and TRY to do the dances lol) and enjoy Li Li at her best.
TJ says:
August 28, 2008, 10:40 am
It has been seven years? Whoa.
J.Sampson says:
August 28, 2008, 11:05 am
Having never met her, Aaliyah seemed like a genuinely humble person. She was beautiful inside and out. I wonder what the industry would be like if she were still alive. Each day we live is precious. I pray I live each one as God intends.
sdg1844 says:
August 28, 2008, 12:38 pm
I still miss her uniqueness. She truly tried to break new ground musically and visually. She was not like anyone else and I loved her for that. She seemed like a very sweet grounded young woman. I remember being absolutely stunned when I heard she'd died in a plane crash. Just stunned. Then 2 weeks later came 9/11. It was too much.
Shell says:
August 28, 2008, 3:45 pm
I can't believe it has been seven years. The year before she passed, I was really getting into her. I think she would of been one of the few singers that would of been a good actor as well. At least we still have her music and her movies. She is still missed.
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