Untimely death is always tragic, but the timing of Aaliyah's passing at 22 was doubly poignant because it occurred months after the release of her greatest album. The self-titled third LP showed the former "street but sweet" teen star had grown up. Her collaborations with Timbaland gave songs such as We Need a Resolution a sophisticated, innovative touch. They also changed the face of R&B for ever. When she died in a plane crash in August 2001, she was on the cusp of something remarkable.
Rosie Swash is a senior national news editor for the Guardian. She is deputy editor of the Guardian's Rights and Freedom series