Aaliyah Album In The Works, Producer Says
Fans of Aaliyah may be in for a treat, if one of the last producers to work with the late R&B superstar is to be believed. Jeffery “J. Dub” Walker, who crafted “I Refuse” and “What If” for the singer’s final studio album, 2001’s Aaliyah, tweeted Monday that a posthumous album composed entirely of previously unreleased material is in the works. Walker’s tweet has since been taken down, but Soul Culture managed to take a screen grab before it was pulled.
“Just got great news today; the smash unreleased song called ‘Steady Ground’ I produced on #Aaliyah is gonna be on her upcoming album,” Walker’s tweet read.
Walker previously revealed to YouKnowIGotSoul.com that “Steady Ground” was intended to be included on Aaliyah but was left off due to technical problems with the recording. “It was really the first single after ‘Rock the Boat,’ but my engineer was mixing the record and somehow lost the vocals. So the vocals that you hear are really just the demo vocals,” Walker told the site. “The final vocals got erased, so yeah. So that’s why it didn’t make the album.”
Aaliyah’s self-titled third album was released just a month before her tragic death in an August 25, 2001, plane crash in the Bahamas. She was heavily involved in her burgeoning acting career at the time of her passing, having just finished filming “Queen of the Damned,” so the amount of unreleased material available for a possible album remains unclear.
A compilation album, I Care for You, was released in 2002. It featured some new material as well as many of Aaliyah’s biggest hits, including “Are You That Somebody,” “One in a Million” and “Try Again.”
The singer had numerous film projects in the works at the time of her death. She’d already filmed a portion of her role in “The Matrix Reloaded” and was set for “The Matrix Revolutions”; she had to be replaced in the films by actress Nona Gaye. She was also set to play the title role in “Honey,” a part that ended up going to Jessica Alba.
Finally, Aaliyah was attached to the remake of “Sparkle,” which was delayed after her death but filmed late last year with Jordin Sparks in the title role and Whitney Houston as her mother. The film will be released in August.
According to Idolator, Aaliyah’s brother, Rashad Haughton, tweeted Tuesday (March 6) that “no official album [is] being released and supported by the Haughton family,” but he did not deny that her label and producers were working on the project.