Wednesday, August 25, 2010

More Than a Woman

I did this last year, but I feel compelled to post another remembrance post to honor one of mah favo singaz ever who was unfairly pulled from my pop-addicted life 9 aƱoz ago. If you're so inclined, please take a momento of silencio por favor and send a kind thought to the heavenly majesty of the one and only Aaliyah!

For those of you weren't lucky enough to have had your earz beautifully embraced by the song stylingz of dis R&B visionary, lemme esssplain why she is sooooOoOoOo importante. Modern R&B was largely a secular genre throughout the 80s & 90s that was kept penned to urban radio stationz and had little luck breaking into the pop radio format (bored/confused yet?).

Sure, artistz like En Vogue or Janet Jackson were able to transcend deez boundaries, but they were the rare four-leaf cloverz of the bunch. But then in 1994, we were all introduced to sumfing special...and the music world would never effing be the same!

Aaliyah, who was only 15, recorded and released her debut album, Age Ain't Nothing But a Number, and it spawned a whole bunch of crossover hitz. She wasn't afraid to take her angelic R&B voice and hook it up with a more mainstream, poppy/dancey song structure. And the rest is supa serial history! Aaliyah was nominated for Grammys, won Video Music Awards, went to #1 in the Billboard Hot 100 wiff her inescapable "Try Again" and starred in two moviez!

If it wasn't for Aaliyah, current R&B princesses Mya, Monica, Rihanna, Ciara, Rhonetta, Brandy, Ashanti, Tweet & Christina Milian, would still be spinning their wheels in voice lessonz!



Justin said...

I first became aware of Aaliyah from the movie Queen of the Damned (mostly a pretty bad movie, but she was great in it). I was a *huge* fan of the Anne Rice vampire novels, especially the second and third books -- the first book was made into another pretty bad movie, "Interview with a Vampire", and the second and third ("The Vampire Lestat" and "Queen of the Damned") were crammed into this second movie -- Lestat was better-cast in the second movie -- Tom Cruise is unbearable in anything he's in but was particularly bad as Lestat -- but otherwise the movie was disappointing. Anne Rice completely reinvented Vampire fiction and without her, there would be no True Blood, no Twilight, no Vampire Diaries, etc.

I looked up Aaliyah after watching the movie -- she had a great charisma and I found her fascinating -- and was very sad to find out she had died. And in such an awful and pointless way, and so unbelievably young.

Anonymous said...

Do I have to say how much I loooove this post! No, of course not! Alas, I need to thank you for introducing me to her several years ago. She remains one of my all time favorites.

Justin, I agree that Aaliyah is the only reason anyone should watch Queen of the Damned!

Chris D. said...

I'm not that familiar with Aaliyah. I must have seen her in Queen of the Damned as well. I don't think I ever saw all of that movie, just parts while channel surfing. I'm sure I was mostly interested in Stuart Townsend, whom I seem to recall finding quite hot. I think he reminded me of Gavin Rossdale, of Bush, who I think I also found quite hot when wearing certain hair styles.

It is always a shame when people are cut down in their youth. I suppose that it is a reminder that every day matters.

Sour Deez said...

I lurrrrv Aaliyah and More Than A Woman is my favest of all time. it's just awesome to hear someone praise her queeness cuz not a lot of people realize/remember what she got over any of the latest poptart princesses. they ain't nothing butta $numba$ lovez it!

Justin said...

Yeah, Chris, Stuart Townsend is very hot -- he's even hotter when he uses his native Irish Accent.

He was a better fit for Lestat than Tom Cruise had been in Interview with a Vampire. But neither *really* worked. Lestat was supposed to be very tall (Cruise is short) and blond (they made Cruise blond in Interview but he didn't look it). Townsend at least is short but they were smart enough not to turn him blond -- he just wouldn't have looked natural. Nonetheless, overall, he fit the character way better than Cruise had.

Townsend also played a pastry chef working for Karen in Will & Grace. His character was oversexed and bisexual and spent most of the episode shirtless. :)

Tam said...

I'm afraid I don't know Aaliya from a hole in the ground. Oh wait, she is in a hole in the ground. Boo hiss. Sorry, I just couldn't resist. That was bad.

Try Again sounds familiar. Not sure if I've heard it on the radio or there is another song now that is familiar. It's always sad when a young person's life ends too soon.

Melody, Destroyer of Dreams said...

Ugh no way-Townsend was awful as Lestat. I've read the vampire chronicles as well and he just came off as a failed member of that band Disturbed or something.

I hate Cruise, he's a royal jackass, but I think he did the role far better justice. He at least captured Lestat's snobbery and expression far better.

As for the lovely Aaliyah-you know how I love her!! We need a resolution...we need a resolution...

Anonymous said...

Hey Josh, I remember you called me on my cell when I was working to tell me you just heard Aaliyah died. You were so upset, and I couldn't believe that beautiful, young woman, and amazing talent was taken from the world. You probably felt like I did when I heard John Lennon was murdered. At first you don't believe it, you think it must be some very sick idea of a joke. Then you realize it's true, and it hits you like a ton of bricks. So very sad.

Love, mom

Anonymous said...

Townsend my have looked the part, but Cruise, in my opinion did do a better job at capturing that Lestat we hate and love at the same time.

Melody: Remember one of our fav scenes when he danced with the corpse! If that isn't Lestat, I don't know what is!

However, I can't stand Cruise in anything else! And if I'm not mistaken, I believe that Rice thought the same way. At first she was upset that Cruise was playing the part, then after she saw his performance she agreed that he did land it.


Delisa said...

Aww, I miss her so! Thanks for this.