Drake Producer Initially Wanted For Aaliyah Album
Noah '40' Shebib reveals how the late star's family reached out to him first...
Drake on the receiving end of scathing criticism when he [uuid=2c3b50dc-20f9-4dbe-9a98-7a89871f4f56]Aaliyah album, but it turns out that his long-time producer Noah '40' Shebib was initially approached about crafting the LP.
Drizzy began dropping hints about the project in the spring of 2012, but things got serious that summer when he released the single Enough Said, featuring previously unheard Aaliyah vocals.
The track was met with mixed reviews, and artists including Timbaland and a ferocious DMX would openly criticise Drake for attempting to work on an Aaliyah album without their help, or the blessing of her family.
In a new interview with Vibe however, 40 - who executive produced Drake's Nothing Was the Same album - explained that Aaliyah's family actually reached out to him to work on the LP, and that's when Drake got onboard.
"Aaliyah's label Blackground--the Hankersons, her uncle and cousin — came to me and said if she was around she'd want you to do this [posthumous] project," 40 explained.
"I've been obsessed with Aaliyah forever, and I know Drake has his relationship with her. But that opportunity was mine. Drake said, 'Can I do it with you?' and I was like, 'Of course, we'll do it together.' "
He went on to explain: "The world reacting to Drake's involvement so negatively, I just wanted nothing to do with it. That was a very sad experience for me.
"I was naïve to the politics surrounding Aaliyah's legacy and a bit ignorant to Timbaland's relationship and everybody else involved and how they'd feel.
"Tim said to me, 'Don't stop, make the album.' I think that was Tim taking the position of, 'I'm not going to stop you. If you're not going to do it, that's your decision.' But ultimately, I wasn't comfortable and didn't like the stigma.
"We released [Enough Said], but I was seven songs deep. [Aaliyah's] mother saying 'I don't want this out' was enough for me. I walked away very quickly."
Back in October 2013, Drake himself also revealed that he is no longer involved with the plans, stating the project was "blown out of proportion".