When an artist as singular as Prince checks out—someone responsible for 39 studio albums, which have sold over 100 million copies worldwide, resulting in 47 Billboard Hot 100 entries (among them nineteen top 10s and five No. 1s in the U.S. alone)—they don’t just vanish. They leave an indelible legacy: partly of their own doing and partly based on the impact they’ve had on other artists.
Prince’s pen never slept, jotting joints for pop stars from Paula Abdul to Stevie Nicks to TLC, and even a country jam for Kenny Rogers (not to mention his jazz fusion band Madhouse). The credits—from “Jamie Starr” to “Alexander Nevermind” and “Joey Coco”—might be confusing. But if you listen carefully you can always tell a Prince joint. Here are a few tunes you might hear with new ears now.