News of Amy Winehouse‘s sudden death on Saturday continues an eerie trend in the music world; one aptly titled the Forever 27 Club.
At just 27-years old, Winehouse’s untimely death is preceded by the legendary Jimi Hendrix, Janis Joplin, Jim Morrison and Brian Jones, who all saw their lives end during a fateful 27th year.
The so-called “club” was created following the deaths of four notable rock musicians in the late-sixties and early-seventies. The group’s inaugural member, Rolling Stones guitarist Jones, passed away in 1969 after drowning in a pool.
He was quickly joined by Hendrix and Joplin, who died within less than a month of each other, in the fall of 1970. Both artists’ deaths are believed to be the result of drug abuse. The Doors’ lead singer Morrison rounded out the original four in July of 1971. Though no autopsy was ever performed, Morrison’s cause of death has been listed as “heart failure.”
Nirvana’s celebrated frontman Kurt Cobain took his own life in 1994, becoming the fifth member of the elusive group. Cobain’s mother, Wendy O’Connor, was all too familiar with Forever 27, commenting at the time of his death: “Now he’s gone and joined that stupid club, I told him not to join that stupid club.”
Other musicians that have passed away at the age of 27 include The Grateful Dead’s Ron “Pigpen” McKernan, The Stooges’ bassist Dave Alexander and R&B singer Linda Jones, among several others.
While the legacy of Winehouse remains to be seen, there is no question that her incredible potential was cut short. Winehouse’s Back to Black garnered critical acclaim, earning the singer five out of the six Grammy Awards for which was nominated in 2008.
Winehouse made her last public appearance on Wednesday night, joining goddaughter Dionne Bromfield on stage at The Roundhouse in Camden. The troubled singer was found dead in her Camden home on Saturday afternoon.