They say only the good die young, and if there is one industry that knows that statement more than any other, it’s the music industry. While it's true that we will all die someday, the music industry has seen plenty of bright young talent being ripped away from its hands far too soon, whether it’s from drugs, alcohol, or unrelated circumstances. Looking back through the annals of rock and roll history, it doesn’t take long to see some familiar names on the list of the "27 Club."
Names such as Jimi Hendrix, Kurt Cobain, and Amy Winehouse all jump off the page as you scroll through the growing list of those who were never able to really enjoy their success. By 1971, the list was expanded rapidly but it wasn’t until Cobain’s death in 1994 that the club came to fruition. Since then, many have speculated on the exact motivation of Cobain’s suicide and whether or not musicians did in fact have a statistical probability to die at the age of 27 or not. A study done by the British Medical Journal in 2011 actually investigated the probability of a given musician dying by the age of 27; naturally, the study concluded that there was no evidence that a musician’s risk of death increased at the age of 27.
For decades, fellow musicians, reporters, and filmmakers have been intrigued by the 27 Club. As recent as 2009, John Craigie wrote a song entitle “28” to pay homage to the deaths of Jim Morrison, Janis Joplin, and Cobain. Since then, the list has only grown in length, now having a total of 44 musicians recognized as having died at age 27 over the past century. There is little discussion that it is a tragedy to lose someone so young, however; these10 musicians are some of the most widely known and significant members of the 27 Club.
10 Amy Winehouse -- 27 Years, 312 Days
9 Freaky Tah -- 27 Years, 318 Days
8 Pete Ham -- 27 Years, 362 Days
7 Jacob Miller -- 27 Years, 324 Days
6 Kurt Cobain -- 27 Years, 44 Days
5 Ron “Pigpen” McKernan -- 27 Years, 181 Days
4 Jim Morrison -- 27 Years, 207 Days
3 Janis Joplin -- 27 Years, 258 Days
2 Brian Jones -- 27 Years, 125 Days
1 Jimi Hendrix -- 27 Years, 295 Days
No matter where you live or how old you are, chances are you have heard of the late Jimi Hendrix before. As a singer, songwriter, and musician, he was one of the most influential electric guitarists in history. Despite his professional career only spanning four years, the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame described him as “arguably the greatest instrumentalist in the history of rock music.” Similar to Jim Morrison of The Doors, Hendrix symbolized the counterculture movement of America in the 1970s. Hendrix was the highest paid performer in the world during his career and headlined Woodstock in 1969. On September 18, 1970, Hendrix was pronounced dead as a result of an accidental barbiturate-related asphyxia.
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