Canadian recording artist Drake — with the help of his longtime producer Noah “40” Shebib — has released a new Aaliyah single, lending credence to recent reports that he’ll executive produce the late R&B singer’s posthumous album. He posted the song, “Enough Said,” on his blog Sunday.
Reactions to this project have been mixed, with many citing the fact that Drake neither knew nor worked with Aaliyah before her death in 2001. His devotion to her, however, is no secret: he has her face tattooed on his back and recently inked a second tattoo in her honor.
But for some, years of dedicated Aaliyah fandom isn’t enough to put Drake in charge of the album. Aaliyah’s friend and longtime producer Timbaland, for example, expressed his disapproval in an interview with New York City’s Power 105 radio station. The proper way to produce the album, Timbaland said, would be for Drake to collaborate with him and Missy Elliott, who both worked closely with the late artist on her second album, One in a Million. With regards to producing a posthumous album, Timbaland added, “It can’t be something to make money off of, ’cause I think it’s wrong to make money off the dead.”
“Enough Said” features never-before-heard Aaliyah vocal tracks layered over simple percussion, with Drake rapping a typical Drake verse about a minute and a half in. Controversy, implications and vague eeriness aside, the track is definitely worth a listen. It’s got a mellow yet haunting aesthetic that lingers after the final beats fade out. If anything, consider it an opportunity to hear previously unreleased vocals from the talented singer, who died in a plane crash 11 years ago this month.