It's even harder to believe that she would have been 33 today.
Not that anyone could ever forget her. Many of her celebrity friends took to Twitter Monday to wish the late superstar a happy birthday.
"#HappyBirthdayAaliyah Thank u to all of Aaliyah fans 4 remembering the impact she had on music! So appreciated," Elliott wrote. Timbaland added his sentiment soon after.
"Happy birthday aaliyah babygirl i miss you."
Rapper and collaborator Lil Kim tweeted her feelings, too. "#HappyBirthdayAaliyah my Angel!!!!! I Love U and Miss U So Much !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!" she wrote.
Elliott and Aaliyah were a dynamic musical team together, but the producer remembers her softer side.
"She would just do silly stuff," Elliott told Rolling Stone in an August interview. "One time, she put these big fake teeth in her mouth, the kind you get at a joke shop, and she came into my room and started doing the scenes from Romeo Must Die. Her personality was very playful, but she was also equally caring and compassionate."
"Tim and I were new producers," says Elliott. "From day one, she had that much faith in our music that she treated us like we already sold 2 million records, when we hadn't sold anything yet. She really helped make us what we are today."
Aaliyah even had impact on today's hot acts — ones that didn't even know her personally. Rapper Drake penned a letter to her in 2011 — and he even got her face inked on his back.
"I've never lost a parent, a friend or a lover but I will never forget this day for the rest of my life. I remember getting the news that you had passed and it connected with my heart like a clean shot from Muhammad Ali. I was crushed," the Canadian rapper wrote.
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