Drake has never been shy about his enthusiasm for Aaliyah, even sporting a tattoo of the late singer on his back, and the YMCMB rapper might be taking his fandom to a new level, by assisting with production on her upcoming posthumous album. Rumor has it that Drake might even debut a new single featuring vocals from Aaliyah at his annual OVO Fest in Toronto this weekend, but not if Timbaland has something to say about it.
To backtrack a bit, Drake got tongues wagging in March when he casually mentioned to U.K. personality Tim Westwood that he had something in store involving Aaliyah. “I have some great Aaliyah news coming soon,” Drake said cryptically, adding, “Just some special things. Great things for music, period.”
Call it a coincidence, but Drake’s declaration coincided with a tweet from The Hitmen producer Jeffery “J. Dub” Walker that same month. “Just got great news today; the smash unreleased song called ’Steady Ground’ I produced on #Aaliyah is gonna be on her upcoming album:)” he wrote in a tweet, which was later deleted.
Although Drake would not confirm any details, the rumors were enough to get Aaliyah’s close friend and longtime producer Timbaland to speak up.
During an interview with The Breakfast Club on New York City’s Power 105 radio station in April, Timbaland made it clear that he and Missy Elliott should both be involved in any Aaliyah album in the works. “I know they trying to drop some Aaliyah records, but if he do it, it should be with me and Missy,” Timbo said, referring to reports that Drake was manning the project. “The proper way for him to do that would be for me, him and Missy to be all on the record. The best decision, what the fans would want to see is all three of us. It can’t be something to make money off of ’cause I think it’s wrong to make money off the dead.”
Things were quiet for a few months after that, until this week when HipHopDx reported, from an inside source, that Drake would be executive producing Aaliyah’s album and debuting a new single featuring her vocals at OVO Fest this coming weekend. “Breakfast Club” host Charlamagne Tha God then decided to remind fans about Timbaland’s previous warning, by sharing the old interview on his Twitter page.
So, as things stand now, Drake seems to be inching closer to revealing an Aaliyah collaboration, while Timbaland maintains that the project would be ill-conceived without input from himself, or Missy. Stay tuned to find out what goes down at OVO Fest this weekend.
Do you think a posthumous Aaliyah track should include Timbaland and Missy? Let us know your thoughts in the comments!