When singer Aaliyah passed away in 2001, she had been in a relationship with Damon Dash, then Jay-Z’s manager and Roc-A-Fella business partner. While they only were able to date about a year, her untimely death has had a lasting impact on Dash, now 47, and has played a part in the relationships he’s had since then.
During the most recent episode of Growing Up Hip-Hop, Dash and son Boogie (Damon Dash II) reminisced about Aaliyah while conversing with his current partner, producer Raquel M. Horn. Dash said that after the “Rock the Boat” singer passed, he doubted that he would be able to find a love that could compare.
“That was love. And when she passed, I never thought I would ever get that feeling again. I got that feeling again with Raquel,” he said.
Not only does he think he obtained that feeling, but Dash also feels like their relationship has received Aaliyah’s blessing.
“It’s funny. I would be talking to [Raquel] and her record would come on,” he said. “It would always be like validation.”
Dash said that when they would talk and the singer’s name would come up, lightening would go off or a butterfly would appear. But the most interesting way in which Aaliyah, or her spirit, has presented herself in their relationship, is through Horn’s alleged conversations with the star.
“I noticed when she’s trying to figure me out,” he said, “she talks to Aaliyah.”
“I ask Aaliyah for advice and it usually answers,” she said.
Horn claims that Aaliyah, in fact, helps her to be a better partner.
“The death of Aaliyah was really hard on Damon,” she said in a confessional. “I feel like she guides me a lot and tells me how to react and how to be the best lover. She is definitely a daily part of our lives together.”
Dash and Horn have been dating, at the very least, since 2015. He refers to her as his fiancée.
Prior to that relationship, Dash was married to designer Rachel Roy. They share two daughters and had a pretty bitter custody battle over them. His son, Boogie, is from a past relationship with a woman named Linda Williams.
Out of all of his past loves though, Dash has always said that Aaliyah was the one, and that before her death, they had plans to marry.
“We were definitely gonna be married. As soon as she had time, we were getting married — like after The Matrix,” he told MTV in 2001. (She was set to appear in the sequel and had already started filming.) “She was the one — she was definitely the one for me.”