musicians The Greatest Musicians Who Died Before 30  

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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.

list ordered by

1
1,138 289
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)

Musicians Who Died of Alcoholism Rock Stars Who Have Aged Surprisingly Well

2
1,142 313
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
1,077 378
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
758 256
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
614 157
Buddy Holly is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Greatest Musicians Who Died Before 30
ConnorRichardson added Buddy Holly Lubbock sound, Rock music, Rockabilly Died at 22 (1936-1959)

6
663 209
Otis Redding is listed (or ranked) 6 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)

7
327 167
Duane Allman is listed (or ranked) 7 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)

8
746 474
Tupac Shakur is listed (or ranked) 8 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)

9
648 415
Amy Winehouse is listed (or ranked) 9 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)

10
575 420
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
400 206
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
524 330
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
336 199
Randy Rhoads is listed (or ranked) 13 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)

14
407 172
Ritchie Valens is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Greatest Musicians Who Died Before 30
Ritchie Valens Chicano rock, Rock music, Rock and roll Died at 17 (1941-1959)

15
242 160
Brian Jones is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Greatest Musicians Who Died Before 30
TracyDrane added Brian Jones Blues-rock, Pop music, Rock music

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16
158 47
Hank Williams is listed (or ranked) 16 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)

17
454 379
The Notorious B.I.G. is listed (or ranked) 17 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)

18
291 213
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
216 239
Tammi Terrell is listed (or ranked) 19 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)

20
232 175
Cliff Burton is listed (or ranked) 20 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)

21
238 271
Sid Vicious is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Greatest Musicians Who Died Before 30
miriam added Sid Vicious Rock music, Punk rock Died at 21 (1957-1979)

22
162 201
Shannon Hoon is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Greatest Musicians Who Died Before 30
FireMonkey added Shannon Hoon Rock music, Folk music, Grunge Died at 28 (1967-1995)

23
168 149
Marc Bolan is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Greatest Musicians Who Died Before 30
TracyDrane added Marc Bolan Psychedelic folk, Protopunk, Pop rock

24
159 135
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
174 210
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
51 45
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kingbee63 added Eddie Cochran Rock music, Rockabilly, Rock and roll Died at 21 (1938-1960)

27
179 200
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
44 14
Sam Cooke is listed (or ranked) 28 on the list The Greatest Musicians Who Died Before 30
Sam Cooke Pop music, Rhythm and blues, Jazz

29
59 70
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

Rock Stars Who Died at Age 29 Old Rock Stars You Didn't Realize Are Still Alive

30
155 182
Frankie Lymon is listed (or ranked) 30 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)

31
71 69
Nick Drake is listed (or ranked) 31 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)

32
116 187
Tim Buckley is listed (or ranked) 32 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)

33
103 158
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
44 64
The Rev is listed (or ranked) 34 on the list The Greatest Musicians Who Died Before 30
phillipsrrn added The Rev Progressive metal, Third-wave of ska, Ska

35
77 176
Rudy Lewis is listed (or ranked) 35 on the list The Greatest Musicians Who Died Before 30
Melissa Harr added Rudy Lewis Rhythm and blues Died at 27 (1936-1964)

36
70 166
Shorty Long is listed (or ranked) 36 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)

37
1 2
Pete Ham is listed (or ranked) 37 on the list The Greatest Musicians Who Died Before 30
Pete Ham

38
23 67
Mitch Lucker is listed (or ranked) 38 on the list The Greatest Musicians Who Died Before 30
brieanna-coolican added Mitch Lucker

39
11 51
Richey Edwards is listed (or ranked) 39 on the list The Greatest Musicians Who Died Before 30
TommyLondo29 added Richey Edwards Alternative rock, Glam punk, Hard rock

40
18 70
Euronymous is listed (or ranked) 40 on the list The Greatest Musicians Who Died Before 30
angelopoulos-segovia added Euronymous Thrash metal, Black metal, Death metal

41
49 139
Chris Bell is listed (or ranked) 41 on the list The Greatest Musicians Who Died Before 30
ryanjjjj8 added Chris Bell Rock music, Power pop Died at 27 (1951-1978)

42
12 78
Chris Bender is listed (or ranked) 42 on the list The Greatest Musicians Who Died Before 30
skwagen added Chris Bender Contemporary R&B, Rhythm and blues