Age Ain’t Nothing But a Number, Aaliyah (Jive/Blackground, 1994)
Aaliyah Dana Haughton has been credited for re-defining the genre of R&B music. Age Ain’t Nothing But a Number saw R. Kelly serve as lead songwriter and producer. The combination of R. Kelly’s
new jack swing beats and Aaliyah’s soulful voice led to 2 Gold singles and the album was certified double platinum in the U.S. where it topped the
Billboard 200 Album chart, certified Gold in Canada and certified Silver in the UK. Worldwide, Age Ain’t Nothing But a Number has sold over 6 million copies.
Aaliyah was signed to a deal with Jive Records at the tender age of 12. She was 15 for the release of Age Ain’t Nothing But a Number.
The lead single, Back & Forth peaked at #5 in the U.S., #2 on the Dutch chart and #7 in Canada. Back & Forth was certified Gold in the U.S. The follow-up was a cover of the Isley Brothers’ 1976 hit At Your Best (You Are Love). It peaked at #6 in the U.S. and was also certified Gold.
The title track fared much better in the UK (#32) than it did in the U.S. (#75). Down With the Clique and The Thing I Like only hit the UK chart.
Aaliyah recorded two more albums before her death in August 2001. Her final self-titled album was released one week after her untimely passing. Aaliyah was only 22 years old. Aaliyah didn’t have a very long career, but her legacy endures. A look at most of the best-selling R&B artists of today in both the U.S. and the UK list Aaliyah as one of their influences.