"As you hold this record in your hands, imagine pressing play on 'Aaliyah' on the day of its release. Just for a moment, imagine only hearing the album itself, removed from its context. All you’d hear is a record of the creatively fruitful and personally transformative years in which it was created. All you’d hear is a warm red light, a blossoming, a revelation, the sound of someone shedding a complex girlhood as she crossed the threshold of womanhood to emerge on her own terms. 'Aaliyah' is a living monument to not only Aaliyah's own personal growth and foray into adulthood, but to a sound that would come to define R&B and an entire era of popular culture at large, inflicting an incalculable influence on future generations of artists to come."