It's unclear if any posthumous releases would be part of that recording deal or if the agreement is still in force. A spokeswoman for Sony Music and for her longtime producer, Clive Davis, declined to comment. Houston's publicist did not respond to requests for comment.
Lawyer Bryan Blaney, who represented Houston in a recent fight with her stepmother over the proceeds of a $1 million life insurance policy she took out on her father, said he did not handle her financial affairs. He said that if the singer did not have a will, the proceeds of any continuing revenues would go to her 18-year-old daughter, Bobbi Kristina Brown.
Whatever the case, as the remembrances of Houston continue, her estate will likely be flush with a stream of money that had slowed to a trickle in recent years.
Although she sold 22.6 million albums in the U.S. in her lifetime — half of those through the best-selling 1992 soundtrack to "The Bodyguard" — her latest release, "I Look To You," sold just 978,000 since its debut in 2009, according to Nielsen SoundScan.
It's not clear whether Houston had debts, but she lost homes in New Jersey and Georgia to foreclosure several years ago, and some reports said she had recently tried to borrow small amounts of money from friends.
Renewed interest in Houston may continue for some time.
Later this year, the singer will appear in the film, "Sparkle," in which she plays a mother concerned about the influence of fame and drugs on her three daughters, who form a singing group.
Houston sings a gospel song on camera and a duet with co-star Jordin Sparks over the credits in the film, which began shooting in October. The movie and a soundtrack are set for wide release in August through Sony Corp.'s TriStar Pictures.
"She was on top of her game," said executive producer Howard Rosenman, who saw a rough cut of the movie on Friday, a day before the singer's death. "She was really coming back."
Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.