Ne-Yo listens to Michael Jackson songs when he feels sad about the star’s death.

The R&B singer-songwriter wrote some tracks for Michael’s unfinished final album.

Ne-Yo has always admired Michael’s music and he was left devastated by his passing in 2009.

“Whenever I get to that place like, damn, Mike is gone, I can listen back to those songs and [think of] the time that we met,” he told the New York Post.

Michael would have celebrated his 54th birthday on August 29.

To pay tribute to the legend, Ne-Yo performed his classic tracks Smooth Criminal, The Way You Make Me Feel and I Just Can’t Stop Loving You at Pepsi/Billboard’s Summer Beats Concert at Gotham Hall in New York City on Wednesday evening.

The 32-year-old also recalled feeling overwhelmed when he met the music legend for the first time.

“His first words to me when he walked into the room were, ‘You know what my favourite song of yours is,’ and he started singing lyrics... I almost fainted. I didn’t, but I came this close,” he smiled.