Musicians The Greatest Musicians Who Died Before 30  

Ranker Music
Originally by
30.5k votes 4.6k voters 129.9k views 43 items

List Rules The best musicians and singers who didn't make it to thirty

List of the greatest musicians who died before they reached the age of 30. On this list you’ll find all of the musicians who had the misfortune to die before turning 30 — from all time periods and including rock stars who died young and singers from other genres. Some died in horrific ways, others were the victims of unfortunate accidents or genetics, but they all left the world a little too soon, earning them a place on this, the list of the most amazing musicians who died before 30.

This list includes members of The 27 Club — those young and rising stars who died at the age of 27. Tragically, many died of overdose or under drug-related circumstances, including Jimi Hendrix, Amy Winehouse, and Kurt Cobain. Other musicians on this list died from poisoning (Robert Johnson), plane crashes (Otis Redding, Buddy Holly, and the Big Bopper), and even murder (Mia Zapata). In the hip-hop world, both Tupac Shakur and The Notorious B.I.G. were killed outright, both having been shot repeatedly. No one knows for certain who murdered the two rap legends, but it is beyond a doubt that the musicians died too young. The two rappers may be gone, but they live on in fans’ memories.

On this list you can find all of the musicians who died too young, never reaching the age of 30. The list contains rock musicians, rappers, guitar players, drummers, singers, jazz musicians, and more, but the musical style differences aren’t important. Fans still mourn these great artists, often wondering what might have been had these musicians lived.

1
1,448 418
Jimi Hendrix is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Greatest Musicians Who Died Before 30
krazykids1011 added Jimi Hendrix Blues-rock, Rock music, Experimental rock Died at 27 (1942-1970)

2
1,390 440
Jim Morrison is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Greatest Musicians Who Died Before 30
krazykids1011 added Jim Morrison Blues-rock, Rock music, Acid rock Died at 27 (1943-1971)

3
1,400 476
Kurt Cobain is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Greatest Musicians Who Died Before 30
krazykids1011 added Kurt Cobain Grunge, Alternative rock, Punk rock Died at 27 (1967-1994)

4
926 362
Janis Joplin is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Greatest Musicians Who Died Before 30
krazykids1011 added Janis Joplin Blues-rock, Rock music, Folk music Died at 27 (1943-1970)

5
829 295
Otis Redding is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Greatest Musicians Who Died Before 30
Melissa Harr added Otis Redding Southern soul, Soul blues, Rock music Died at 26 (1941-1967)

6
777 240
Buddy Holly is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Greatest Musicians Who Died Before 30
ConnorRichardson added Buddy Holly Lubbock sound, Rock music, Rockabilly Died at 22 (1936-1959)

7
1,028 604
Tupac Shakur is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Greatest Musicians Who Died Before 30
Melissa Harr added Tupac Shakur Hip hop music, Political hip hop, Gangsta rap Died at 25 (1971-1996)

8
859 568
Amy Winehouse is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Greatest Musicians Who Died Before 30
Melissa Harr added Amy Winehouse Doo-wop, Pop music, Neo soul Died at 27 (1983-2011)

9
425 255
Duane Allman is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Greatest Musicians Who Died Before 30
FireMonkey added Duane Allman Blues-rock, Rock music, Jazz fusion Died at 24 (1946-1971)

10
715 535
Aaliyah is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Greatest Musicians Who Died Before 30
Melissa Harr added Aaliyah Hip hop music, Pop music, Neo soul Died at 22 (1979-2001)

11
513 279
Ronnie Van Zant is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Greatest Musicians Who Died Before 30
FireMonkey added Ronnie Van Zant Rock music, Southern rock Died at 29 (1948-1977)

12
686 418
Selena is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Greatest Musicians Who Died Before 30
Melissa Harr added Selena Mexican cumbia, Pop music, Latin American music Died at 23 (1971-1995)

13
517 234
Ritchie Valens is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Greatest Musicians Who Died Before 30
Ritchie Valens Chicano rock, Rock music, Rock and roll Died at 17 (1941-1959)

14
312 224
Brian Jones is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Greatest Musicians Who Died Before 30
TracyDrane added Brian Jones Blues-rock, Pop music, Rock music

15
427 271
Randy Rhoads is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Greatest Musicians Who Died Before 30
FireMonkey added Randy Rhoads Glam metal, Heavy metal, Neo-classical metal Died at 25 (1956-1982)

16
632 454
The Notorious B.I.G. is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Greatest Musicians Who Died Before 30
Melissa Harr added The Notorious B.I.G. Hip hop music, Hardcore hip hop, East Coast hip hop Died at 24 (1972-1997)

17
277 107
Hank Williams is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Greatest Musicians Who Died Before 30
kingbee63 added Hank Williams Outlaw country, Western music, Folk music Died at 29 (Sep. 1923-Jan. 1953)

18
367 269
Robert Johnson is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Greatest Musicians Who Died Before 30
Robert Johnson Rock music, Blues, Country blues Died at 27 (1911-1938)

19
311 236
Cliff Burton is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Greatest Musicians Who Died Before 30
FireMonkey added Cliff Burton Thrash metal, Progressive metal, Power metal Died at 24 (1962-1986)

20
317 360
Sid Vicious is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Greatest Musicians Who Died Before 30
miriam added Sid Vicious Rock music, Punk rock Died at 21 (1957-1979)

21
276 304
Tammi Terrell is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Greatest Musicians Who Died Before 30
Melissa Harr added Tammi Terrell Pop music, Rhythm and blues, Soul music Died at 24 (1945-1970)

22
136 60
Sam Cooke is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Greatest Musicians Who Died Before 30
Sam Cooke Pop music, Rhythm and blues, Jazz

23
215 266
Shannon Hoon is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Greatest Musicians Who Died Before 30
FireMonkey added Shannon Hoon Rock music, Folk music, Grunge Died at 28 (1967-1995)

24
218 197
Bradley Nowell is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Greatest Musicians Who Died Before 30
ryanjjjj8 added Bradley Nowell Hip hop music, Alternative hip hop, Ska punk

25
210 261
Gram Parsons is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Greatest Musicians Who Died Before 30
Melissa Harr added Gram Parsons Rock music, Country rock, Country Died at 26 (1946-1973)

26
216 205
Marc Bolan is listed (or ranked) 26 on the list The Greatest Musicians Who Died Before 30
TracyDrane added Marc Bolan Psychedelic folk, Protopunk, Pop rock

27
240 255
Ian Curtis is listed (or ranked) 27 on the list The Greatest Musicians Who Died Before 30
Melissa Harr added Ian Curtis New Wave, Gothic rock, Punk rock Died at 23 (1956-1980)

28
87 94
Ranker Video
kingbee63 added Eddie Cochran Rock music, Rockabilly, Rock and roll Died at 21 (1938-1960)

29
112 142
Christina Grimmie is listed (or ranked) 29 on the list The Greatest Musicians Who Died Before 30
Thunderwing added Christina Grimmie Hip hop music, Pop music, Dance-pop

30
179 39
Avicii is listed (or ranked) 30 on the list The Greatest Musicians Who Died Before 30
Avicii Electro house, Alternative dance, House music

31
145 239
Tim Buckley is listed (or ranked) 31 on the list The Greatest Musicians Who Died Before 30
Melissa Harr added Tim Buckley Traditional music, Folk music, Experimental rock Died at 28 (1947-1975)

32
196 224
Frankie Lymon is listed (or ranked) 32 on the list The Greatest Musicians Who Died Before 30
Melissa Harr added Frankie Lymon Doo-wop, Pop music, Rock music Died at 25 (1942-1968)

33
126 192
Tommy Bolin is listed (or ranked) 33 on the list The Greatest Musicians Who Died Before 30
ScottLounsbury added Tommy Bolin Blues-rock, Rock music, Jazz fusion Died at 25 (1951-1976)

34
99 116
Nick Drake is listed (or ranked) 34 on the list The Greatest Musicians Who Died Before 30
wat is love added Nick Drake Folk music, Folk rock Died at 26 (1948-1974)

35
76 99
The Rev is listed (or ranked) 35 on the list The Greatest Musicians Who Died Before 30
phillipsrrn added The Rev Progressive metal, Third-wave of ska, Ska

36
22 39
Pete Ham is listed (or ranked) 36 on the list The Greatest Musicians Who Died Before 30
Pete Ham

37
87 215
Rudy Lewis is listed (or ranked) 37 on the list The Greatest Musicians Who Died Before 30
Melissa Harr added Rudy Lewis Rhythm and blues Died at 27 (1936-1964)

38
79 197
Shorty Long is listed (or ranked) 38 on the list The Greatest Musicians Who Died Before 30
Melissa Harr added Shorty Long Rhythm and blues, Soul music Died at 29 (1940-1969)

39
38 105
Mitch Lucker is listed (or ranked) 39 on the list The Greatest Musicians Who Died Before 30
brieanna-coolican added Mitch Lucker

40
59 169
Chris Bell is listed (or ranked) 40 on the list The Greatest Musicians Who Died Before 30
ryanjjjj8 added Chris Bell Rock music, Power pop Died at 27 (1951-1978)

41
30 100
Euronymous is listed (or ranked) 41 on the list The Greatest Musicians Who Died Before 30
angelopoulos-segovia added Euronymous Thrash metal, Black metal, Death metal

42
19 79
Richey Edwards is listed (or ranked) 42 on the list The Greatest Musicians Who Died Before 30
TommyLondo29 added Richey Edwards Alternative rock, Glam punk, Hard rock

43
18 114
Chris Bender is listed (or ranked) 43 on the list The Greatest Musicians Who Died Before 30
skwagen added Chris Bender Contemporary R&B, Rhythm and blues