Which Musicians Are Part Of The Infamous '27 Club'?


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Mark Henderson Profile
Mark Henderson answered
There have been a number of famous people, most notably musicians, who have passed away at the tender age of 27 and joined the excusive (for want of a better word) '27 Club'.

The '27 Club' (or the 'Forever 27 Club' or simply 'Club 27') was created as a part of popular culture on the back of the deaths of five famous musicians. Brian Jones, Jimi Hendrix, Janis Joplin, Jim Morrison and Kurt Cobain all died at the age of 27, and with the exception of Janis Joplin, there is a certain level of controversy surrounding all of the above deaths.

We aim to detail some of the stories behind the following famous faces, starting with the most recent members of the '27 Club', before going on to highlight some other musicians you may not know about.

Kurt Cobain
Photomage Kurt Cobain was the lead singer and guitarist of influential alternative grunge band Nirvana, in the late 80s and early 90s. He died around April 5th 1994 (the exact date is unknown due to the circumstances) at the age of 27 years and 44 days. It was ruled he had taken his own life with the use of a shotgun.

Jim Morrison
cc:cosmicautumn:7527891@N04 Jim Morrison was the enigmatic front man of '60s rock group The Doors. He died on July 3rd 1971 at the age of 27 years and 207 days. His death was listed as due to 'heart failure', although controversy surrounds this verdict as no official autopsy was performed.

Janis Joplin
cc:oddsock:28648431@N00 Janis Joplin was a singer/songwriter who rose to prominence during the hippy movement and 'Summer of Love' eras of the '60s. She died of a probable heroin overdose on October 4th 1970 at the age of 27 years and 258 days. It is believed she was given a stronger form of heroin than her usual hit, as many of her dealer's other customers died in similar circumstances at around the same time.

Jimi Hendrix
cc:Luiz Fernando / Sonia Maria:7477245@N05 Jimi Hendrix was a famous guitarist and singer, who most notably fronted the band, The Jimi Hendrix Experience. He died on September 18th 1970 after choking on his vomit in his sleep after combining sleeping pills and wine. He was 27 years and 295 days old. The controversy surrounding his death comes in the form of the many murder allegations that surrounded the case in the following years.

Brian Jones
cc:MEDIODESCOCIDO:7972462@N02 Brian Jones was a founding member of The Rolling Stones before Mick Jagger and Keith Richards found greater fame via their songwriting abilities. He died at home in his swimming pool, and a coroner later ruled 'death by misadventure'. He was 27 years and 125 days old - and is seen in this picture in crude plushy doll form.

Amy Winehouse
cc:IVO GARCEV:27482654@N05 Amy Winehouse was a British singer and songwriter who was the first woman to win five Grammy awards. She died at the age of 27 after a long battle with alcohol and drug abuse. The coroner's inquest reported that her body alcohol level at the time of her death was more than five times the legal drink-drive limit.

Other 'Members'
While the above are included in the '27 Club', there are whole host of other musicians who have also fallen foul of this unlucky phenomenon. Their non-inclusion into the list can be put down to their relative obscurity, but I have picked out some of the more notable contributors for you to remember:

Jeremy Michael Ward
Jermemy Michael Ward was the sound engineer and sound manipulator for odd-prog band The Mars Volta and dub-reggae outfit, De Facto. He died at 27 years' old (after a heroin overdose) on 25th March 2003.

Richey Edwards
Richey Edwards was the rhythm guitarist for politically-charged rock band The Manic Street Preachers. He went missing on 1st February 1995 at the age of 27, but wasn't declared 'presumed dead' until 2008. Many fans still hold out hope that Richey is still out there somewhere.

Kristen Pfaff
Kristen Pfaff was bass guitarist in the Courtney Love-led, '90s grunge band, Hole, and Janitor Joe. She died from an accidental drug overdose on June 16th 1994, aged just 27.

Pete De Freitas
Pete De Freitas was the drummer for Liverpudlian post-punk group Echo & The Bunnymen whose tub-thumping skills have even been compared to Nirvana's Dave Grohl. He died in a motorcycle accident on his way to London on 14th June 1989, at the age of 27.

D. Boon
D.Boon is best known as the guitarist and vocalist of legendary Californian punk trio, The Minutemen. He was killed in a van accident. As he was lying down in the back, the van veered off the road, Boon was ejected from the vehicle, and broke his neck in the ensuing chaos. This was on December 23rd 1985, when Boon was only 27 years old.

Dave Alexander
Dave Alexander was at one time the original bassist in protopunk band The Stooges. He died on February 10th 1975 following a pulmonary edema at the age of 27.

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