Shortly after John Lennon was murdered, the songs “Woman” and “Watching the Wheels” were released from his album with wife Yoko Ono titled Double Fantasy.
Years later, his widow released Milk and Honey, the follow up to their Double Fantasy album, with unheard music recorded before his tragic death.
The three surviving members of The Beatles also combined vocals previously recorded by John with overdubs to include the tracks "Real Love" and "Free as a Bird" as part of an anthology released 15 years after his death.
Additionally, a live album of his music, titled Live From New York City was created posthumously.
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Lisa “Left Eye” Lopes
Almost seven years after she died, Lisa “Left Eye” Lopes' legacy was continued with the 2009 release of Eye Legacy, a compilation album consisting of not only unreleased songs by Left Eye, but also remixed tracks that had previously appeared on her first solo album, Supernova.
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At the time of his premature death at age 27, Jimi Hendrix left behind an extensive body of work that hadn’t been heard by the general public—which has been curated into multiple posthumous albums.
In fact, the guitar legend only released three studio albums with The Jimi Hendrix Experience—but left behind enough material to create 12 albums of studio recordings.
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Since his death on June 25, 2009, the King of Pop has released three albums.
In October 2009, This Is It was released as a soundtrack to the documentary of the same name, which was about MJ’s preparation for his London residency, also titled “This Is It.” In addition to already released tracks that related to the production, six previously unreleased tracks were included on the album.
The following year saw the release of Michael, the late Jackson 5 singer’s first official posthumous compilation album, which was also the first album of all-new Michael songs in nine years.
Most recently, on May 13, 2014, another compilation album—titled Xscape—dropped with seven songs previously recorded by MJ that had previously been cut from other albums.
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Janis Joplin had already recorded much of her second studio album, Pearl, which ended up being released just months after her death at age 27.
The rock icon had made so much progress with the album prior to her death that she personally approved and arranged the nine tracks that featured her singing.
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The Notorious B.I.G.
The Notorious B.I.G. debut album was eerily named, Ready to Die, so it’s fitting that his second studio album—and first posthumous album—was named Life After Death.
Biggie was heavily involved with the production, as he was shot and killed just two weeks shy of the release date.
Years later, Bad Boy Records dropped Born Again, which consisted primarily of unfinished material and unheard verses the rapper, born Christopher Wallace, had recorded while producing Ready to Die in the early 90s.
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Much like his East Coast counterpart, Tupac Shakur left behind a legacy that was able to live on thanks to the discovery of previously unreleased music.
Like Biggie, his first posthumous drop was actually finished while he was still alive, and released after his death on Sept. 13, 1996.
His mother went on to release six more posthumous records, which have consisted of unfinished tracks, unreleased material, remixes of old songs and collaborations with modern-day artists.