Aaliyah’s Estate Slams Her Uncle’s ‘Unauthorized’ Announcement of Releasing Her Music To Streaming Platforms

Published: Wednesday 4th Aug 2021 by Rashad

As the 20th anniversary of Aaliyah‘s untimely passing approaches (August 25), the singer’s estate continues to battle her Blackground Records label – helmed by her uncle Barry Hankerson – for control of her music and legacy.

Early Wednesday (August 4), Hankerson sent the late singer’s fans into a frenzy when he launched the cryptic website AaliyahisComing.com – a reported tease that suggests previously unheard Aaliyah music (as well as her entire prized discography) will finally be lifted to streaming services courtesy of his new label, Blackground 2.0.

The move to use the ‘Rock the Boat’ beauty’s catalog to launch his newest business venture has rocked many the wrong way, including her estate.  Look inside to see how they responded to the news.


View this post on Instagram


A post shared by Aaliyah Haughton (@aaliyah)


Taking to Instagram Wednesday night, reps from the singer’s estate made clear they do not support the unauthorized use of any music – heard or previously unheard.

“Protecting Aaliyah’s legacy is, and will always be, our focus,” they wrote. “For 20 years we have battled behind the scenes, enduring shadowy tactics of deception with unauthorized projects targeted to tarnish. We have always been confused as to why there is such as tenacity in causing more pain alongside what we already have to cope with for the rest of our lives.”

Continuing, the statement reads:

“Now, in this 20th year, this unscrupulous endeavor to release Aaliyah’s music without any transparency or full accountability to the estate compels our hearts to express a word – forgiveness.”

Aaliyah’s estate concluded by saying they will “continue to defend ourselves,” especially against those “who have emerged from the shadows to leech off of Aaliyah’s life’s work.”

As of time reported, Hankerson has not responded to the comments.

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  1. Are You Kidding Me? August 5, 2021

    Chile, all of these weirdos need to shut the entire f up.
    That dude ruined JoJo’s career and is holding Aaliyah’s music hostage FOR WHAT?
    I don’t know what that thesis is for. Shut up and put the music out!

    • Keith August 5, 2021


  2. Meme August 5, 2021

    I can’t understand why her music isn’t on streaming services. All these year they could have been making money by doing nothing. I don’t know how that could hurt.

  3. KeyLoLo August 5, 2021

    I just feel like even though it’s been 20 years (about to be) I feel like Aaliyah hasn’t had an ounce of rest since her demise. I feel like she been rolling around inside her wall, trying to find peace but can’t. How can she when her name and Legacy is being used for greed…and then to top it off they are now saying she was drugged before she got on that plane..somebody is lying…her death just ain’t right..period. I know one thing I surely do miss her more than anyone else that we have lost in the industry.

    • Broken Promethis Promethis August 5, 2021


    • eric August 5, 2021

      It’s just another made up story. Aaliyah was perfectly well in the photo Fatima snapped of her leaving in the boat to board the plane. Aaliyah suffered a massive heart attack during the plane’s descent – something that doesn’t happen if you’re drugged and passed out just minutes earlier. Aaliyah was fully alert.

  4. dui August 5, 2021

    barry hankerson is a literal psychopath. anyone who has every worked with him knows he’s a crook

  5. Keeping it real 💯💯 August 5, 2021

    Barry Hankerson is a piece of s***
    He ruined jojo’s early career and tried to with Toni braxtons. I don’t understand why her music isn’t on streaming services. He only holding back Aaliyah’s legacy by not letting the younger generation listen to her.
    This post must because of the normani sample and non clearance issue

    • Credits August 5, 2021

      This post has nothing to do with Normani. It’s actually because Barry has a new artist and label.

  6. Lmfao_Hoe August 5, 2021

    Okay first and foremost hr brother and mother gotta stop this nonsense I’m sorry but Aaliyah has been gone more than a decade and they truly Wanna cherish and continue her legacy why not have her music available? She’s an artist that was passionate about her craft so why strip that from her fans and new ones alike ? Just like the unnecessary backlash to “ Enough Said” that record was dope and 40 the producer would’ve done an excellent job on her unreleased music. Aaliyah would eventually expanded her collaborators just as MJ, Beyonce, and Mariah have done – Quincy, Dream, Walter etc – hence Tim only produced 2 songs off the self-titled. Respect her legacy by letting go and allowing the fans to cherish her catalog.

    • Shayla Queen™ 👑 August 5, 2021

      All of this. Enough Said really WAS dope and I was excited about the whole project coming 💔

  7. Credits August 5, 2021

    Cancel culture will come for Barry Hankerson as soon as he launches his new endeavours.

  8. True Tea August 5, 2021

    Aaliyah is proof a woman can be very attractive & S/E/X/Y without setting Women back 50 years. I have watched all Aaliyah’s videos & never once looked at her & thought…radical feminist.

    Just about every famale artist has pushed feminism or bashed men to some degree. Maybe that’s what they so are so afraid of.

  9. Keith August 5, 2021

    I dont get the estate – AT ALL. They seem to have ignored every opportunity to grow her legacy on all levels. And yes, Hankerson is crazy….Whatever.

  10. J August 5, 2021

    The excess money from the releases needs to be donated because I’ll feel wrong streaming the music otherwise 🥺 As much as I want to stream her music and Prince’s new album, I know that this is not what or how either artist would have wanted their legacy to be. Prince spoke on this when he was alive

  11. eric August 5, 2021

    Judging from most of the comments here and on Instagram, I think a lot of people are misinformed. The estate cares deeply about Aaliyah’s legacy. In the first three years after Aaliyah’s death, her estate put out three yearly calendars (all of which I still have) and the album I Care 4 U. All projects included a note about proceeds going to the Aaliyah Memorial Fund. The goal of this fund has not waivered in the last 20 years. The estate wants to protect her legacy by making sure that all projects honor her in a proper light.

    For one, the estate wants a portion of the proceeds to go to some of the charities Aaliyah supported. The way they do that is by being included. The estate was included in Aaliyah’s MAC Cosmetics line, and they were included in licensing the use of Aaliyah’s image for all of the official Aaliyah apparel that companies are putting out. The estate has also seen a great opportunity with Aaliyah’s music, so it makes sense for them to be upset that Barry has prevented them from using Aaliyah’s music all this time and now appears ready to release it under terms, rights and conditions unknown to them. Imagine the pain of Aaliyah’s mother and brother being excluded from any rights to her music and determining where some of the proceeds go. What Barry is doing is cold, despicable and completely self-serving.

  12. MisanthropyLives August 6, 2021

    It seems like everybody is still trying to capitalize on the Aaliyah brand.

    That said, the laws around music rights are pretty clear. If her uncle owned the label that the music was put out on and has perpetuity on the publishing rights, there is no valid argument that can be made about his current endeavour.

    While the estate posts all of the sentimental drivel necessary to garner support, it does not feel like they really care about the artist’s actual fans at all.

    If they did, they would have spent the past two decades encouraging her publishers to share her music as far and wide as possible.

    What good is a song that nobody is listening to?

  13. Roland Clark April 12, 2023

    Because Barry don’t care about her fans he only cares about the money

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