Aaliyah on her album “AALIYAH”:
“I decided to self title this album Aaliyah, and I wanted to do that cause my name is Arabic and it has a beautiful meaning. It means the highest, most exulted one..the best, and I want the name to carry through the project. Its different from the last LPs because, its, I’m older, you know, I’m more mature, and I think that very evident on the album. So it really showcases Aaliyah, and who she is right now.”
“Now that I’m older, I mean that I’m an adult now, and I want that to show through on the album. So my writers and that, we talk, you know, they ask me how am I feeling, just as a person, you know this point in my life, the things I want to talk about, and they incorporate what I told them.. in the lyrics.”
“All of us have grown, in a lot of ways, you know some of the guys are married now, have kids and, so you know, all of that shows through, in the work so um, I push them to dig deep into themselves, to, to, try things ahead and try things before, and also with me, some of my growths vocally is just more confidence.”
Aaliyah on the song “Loose Rap”:
“That’s one of the songs, one of the first songs we did for the album. I love it so much, because if you listen to it, this is how I, I listen to this song, how I take the song, if you listen to it, it tells three different stories, and its just really about, people come up to you with a whole lot of smack and a lot of weak rap, you know what I mean. It’s like I don’t wanna hear any of your loose rap, and then the first person talks about whether it being a guy or a girl, being a little bit jealous of you, and you say, you know what, I know you talk smack behind my back, but I don’t care, cause you’re just speaking loose rap.”
“Second verse is one about a guy coming to me kicking game, trying to be my guy, and I’m like, your game was a little weak, but I might give you a chance, even though your kicking loose rap.”
“And then the third verse, it’s speaks about my crew, Tim and everybody, all of us and the music we make and, are creativity, and people being a little bit jealous of that and really not you know, trying not to feel it, but it’s Ok, because you know what… everything you say is loose rap. So it tells three different stories, and I think it’s really… it’s just hot!”
Aaliyah on the song “We Need A Resolution”:
“This song is very smooth, but yet it’s not a ballad, but it’s not your.. um… average up tempo, so I thought it was a really smooth way to make an entrance back into music, with my studio album.”
“It’s written by Static, and on this album I wanted to speak about relationships and all kinds of relationships. Good ones, bad ones or what have you, and that song speaks of our relationship that’s kind of.. in the middle, you know what mean. It’s not, either or, really, it’s just at a point where they’re not communicating, they have problems and they want to resolve them, then, what’s actually cool about it is, not all the time, do you actually come to a resolution, you know what I mean. And at the end of the song, they don’t really, they really don’t resolve anything, so, and that happens in life, so that really what that songs about.”
Aaliyah on the video “We Need A Resolution”:
“I wanted the video to be, very simple and to be sexy, and to showcase Aaliyah, the Aaliyah that people know.”
“This is the second time Paul Hunter and I have worked together, so we decided to kinda do, what we did in one in a million, but take it to another level. So we have beautiful scenes, that are um, simple but yet different; we have a snake pit, we have the bedroom scene, we have… an amazing dance sequence so, you get a lot of eye candy, but it’s not overload.
“I’ve always been someone that has had an affinity towards edgy things, towards kind of a dark side, and err, Romeo to Queen of the Damn to the Matrix, they all kind of represent that for me, it’s very edgy seeing me, in a soul a bit dark, and I like that in my music as well so, I felt, in taking this step into another genre, that I wanted to do something that people could… understand the flow with me, and they know me that way in music, so I thought this was the best way to do it in film as well.”
Aaliyah on the song “Never No More”:
“This song was very powerful, in all of this song can help a young woman that’s going through that you know, stand up and say, I’m not gonna take it any more, I’m not gonna, err not gonna let you put your hands on me again, then I’ve accomplished something very great.”
Aaliyah on the song “I Can Be”:
“I thought this was… really cool, because it tells a story of the other woman, and that happen in life, you know, even if you don’t mean to get into a situation like that, sometimes it’s like, Oh wow, here I am… the other girl.”
“So I wanted to tell that story, I thought it was cool, and people.. interpret music the way they want, that’s what it’s for, I look at that song, like, even though this girl is saying, ‘I’ll be that other girl, I’ll be that other woman I don’t mind, I just wanna be with you’, it’s kind of depressing, you know the mood of the song, the tone of it is really dark. So I loved it, I wanted it, I knew it would be somewhat controversial, but did not mind it, because this is about life, this is what music is about.”
Aaliyah on the song “I CARE 4 U”:
“Well my favorite song on the album, it’s hard to pick ’cause I love them all, but if I had to pick one, I’d say ‘I Care 4 U’ because that song is, it’s just gorgeous to me. It’s five years old, Tim and Missy did that song, right when I finished one in a million, and I really wanted to put it in that album but, the album was already mastered and there was no way I could put it on… so we put it aside and waited, and it doesn’t sound like it’s five years old at all. It’s just classic, it’s timeless and I like what the song is saying it’s a female, you know, being the strong person in a relationship, you know saying to a guy you know, if you’re upset, let me wipe your tears, let me care for you, let me prove to you that I can love you, and I just really liked that, I thought it was different.”
Aaliyah talks about her producer Timbaland:
“It is special when Tim and I work together, we are very close, we have a great chemistry and say we just have fun when we work together, we just kinda vibe, we work on vibes you know. We go in the studio, we laugh for a minute, we just play around as friends and then, we just vibe together and that’s how the music happens, that’s how the songs come together and the tracks come together.”
What would your ideal guy be like?
“Someone who has a major sense of humor. Someone who’s grounded and knows where he’s going. My career’s first for me, so he’s got to be able to deal with that and do his own thing as well. Someone who’s family oriented. I’d like to get married and maybe have a kid someday – but that’s way down the road.”
Who’s your role model?
“Barbra Streisand in A Star Is Born. Acting, singing – she does it all.”
How does the music you listen to today compare to the music you listened to growing up?
“I listen to a lot of the same artists I listened to when I was younger: Stevie (Wonder) and Sade. As I got older I got into alternative styles after my brother turned me unto them: Nine Inch Nails, Korn, Oasis and I started to check out things that I wouldn’t have and returned to some that I did: Luther Vandross, Johnny Mathis!”
Who would be your ideal co-star or director?
“There’s so many people that I admire and would love to work with. I’d love to work with Gwyneth Paltrow, I think she’s amazing. And someone whom I’ve admired since I was young is Morgan Freeman. So at some point in my career if I had that opportunity, that would really be great.”
What’s the best advice you’ve been given?
“My parents just tell me, ‘If you know what you want, you should stay determined and go for it. You can do anything.’”
On ‘One In a Million’:
“I was very involved. When I got with the producers, I told them I wanted an album with different moods, different flavors. I wanted to talk about relationships and have party songs.”
On Her Commercial for ‘One In a Million’:
“Vincent Herbert gave us the idea of coming up like out of an elevator, out of the ground. Then Blackground said, ‘Why don’t you just come out of the ground like an earthquake?’ It took all day to do that commercial and it’s hilarious because every time I watch it I say, ‘We were out there for eight hours for a 30 second commercial.’”
Advice for aspiring artists:
“Keep working hard and you can get anything that you want. If God gave you the talent, you should go for it. But don’t think it’s going to be easy. It’s hard!”
On her image:
“Well, I think that the image is a part of me. I wear the baggy pants , the hats, the whole nine. And you know, I may add a little for the excitement and the intrigue in the videos, but my family has told me that little air of mystery that surrounds me is for real.”
“I meditate a lot and try to think good thoughts all the time. I like to remember that God is in my heart and leading me the way through any setbacks I might have and at the same time giving me guidance in my career.”
Being a Singer:
“Well, I obviously can’t be home all the time, going to school and leading a normal life. I have to fluctuate between being tutored and trying to stay a good ol’ Detroit girl. My mom manages me, and her presence helps keep me down to earth. I vow never to forget where I came from. I think it’s important for people who listen to your music to feel they could BE you, that your not this untouchable being.”
“My mom was an educator and has a really good head on her shoulders. She teaches me to give back We have both Breast Cancers and Parkinson’s disease in the family, so she makes sure I go visit patient’s and also participate in fundraisers. She keeps me well rounded as an individual as well, making sure I am exposed to a lot of things other kids my age aren’t.”
“I still wear my trademark sunglasses and have a couple of dozen pair and I plan to wear some of the more unusual ones on stage. It also keeps the lights from nearly blinding me. As for clothes, I like things fitted but that I can still move around in. I like to look sexy but not out there sexy. I don’t wear things that are ridiculously short or low cut. I feel that your talent should do the talking not a revealing outfit.”
“Of course, I would love to get into acting and I am talking to a few producers now. That would be really exciting to be a jack of all trades and do music, movies and TV. I love drama and I think I could be a good dramatic actress. I have to ‘act out’ emotions in my videos a lot and I try to seem as realistic as possible. I also would like to make bigger impact on the world by giving back, and using my celebrity to raise money for people who need it the most. What good is having money and being famous if you can’t share it with others less fortunate than yourself? I always felt that you should treat others how you yourself want to be treated.”
“I have a PlayStaion at home and my favorite game is Resident Evil.”
Preference of school (from back in ’97):
“I like having a tutor on the road with me better because I am not a morning person, so me getting up at 8am to go to school just wasn’t cool when you’re used to bein’ on the road. I like a tutor because I only had to do 3 hours of school a day and my projects were done at my own pace. But on the other hand, I missed my friends.”
Rumors about the lazy eye:
“I really think it’s kinda funny how people like to make things up about you just because they can’t figure you out. Just because I like to wear sunglasses and my hair over one eye doesn’t mean that something is wrong with me. I mean I’ve heard them all. First I had a lazy eye. Then I was crossed eyed. And then I was rumored to have a glass eye. So then I took off the glasses and would switch my part back and forth. You know, one day over the left eye and next over the right. Then it was said that I had something wrong with both eyes. I couldn’t win for nothing. I mean, I love sunglasses. That’s just me. It doesn’t mean something is wrong with my eyes. It’s funny though, in fact, I can see you clearly right now! Ha! Ha! But some people that don’t even know me would like to argue with me on that one.
What was Aaliyah’s most embarrassing moment (from back in 1997):
“I went to goof around with my dancers (we were battling) and I said, ‘Naw, let me show you how it’s done.’ Needles to say, I ended up slipping on stage and I fell right on my butt and started laughin. My dad ran over to me and said, ‘Are you okay?’ and I guess he saw I was laughin so he started laughin. There was only my dancers and crew, but I still turned red.”
Most rewarding moment:
“When a fan comes up to you and says I love your music, there’s nothing better than that.”