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From Amar Singh Chamkila, Kurt Cobain to Amy Winehouse, legendary musicians who passed away at 27

Here's a look at the infamous "27 Club."

From Amar Singh Chamkila, Kurt Cobain to Amy Winehouse, legendary musicians who passed away at 27
Amar Singh Chamkila; Diljit Dosanjh as Amar Singh Chamkila

Last Updated: 04.48 PM, Apr 13, 2024


The more we talk about Amar Singh Chamkila, the more we discover about the legendary musician he was. Imtiaz Ali created the biopic on the Elvis of Punjab, as he was affectionately known, and Diljit Dosanjh played the title role. One of the interesting things about Chamkila is that he passed away at age 27. It is quite a discovery because he is not the only famous musician who faced death at 27; there are many, and together it's called Club 27. 

For the uninitiated, after Amy Winehouse passed away at her London home in 2011, the press welcomed her into the 27 Club, a term that Kurt Cobain's mom had established. In 1994, upon learning of her son's suicide, she made the statement, "Now he's gone and joined that stupid club." Her son was Nirvana's lead vocalist. Earlier, Kurt's mother was alluding to the remarkable roster of legendary stars who passed away at the same young age. Amy Winehouse joins the ranks of the Big Six, which also includes Rolling Stones guitarist Jimi Hendrix, Janis Joplin, Doors frontman Jim Morrison, Kurt Cobain, and Brian Jones. All of them possessed exceptional skills, yet they remained dispersed.


Reporters make reference to "the curse of the 27 Club" in their articles, as if the spate of deaths had a supernatural explanation. 

Take a look at the famous musical artists who died at the age of 27 in detail below:

Amar Singh Chamkila

The infectious energy of his music fueled Amar Singh Chamkila's meteoric rise to fame in the 1980s, but he alienated many people on his path to stardom, tragically leading to his assassination at the tender age of 27. He was the original rockstar of the masses in Punjab and the highest-selling artist of his time. On March 8, 1988, at about 2 p.m., a group of motorcyclists opened fire, killing Chamkila and his wife, Amarjot, who had come to perform in Mehsampur, Punjab. A group of motorcyclists opened fire with multiple bullets, mortally wounding the couple and other members of their entourage. The incident resulted in no arrests, and the case remained unresolved.

Amy Winehouse

Anyone can only speculate as to Amy's mental condition in July 2011, when she drank her final vodka shot at home in London. She seemed unable to do the things she had previously stated she still wanted to do in life. Despite her forthright and honest nature, she consistently avoided disclosing details about her private life. People's observations of Amy point to her obvious dissatisfaction with her professional life. Much like Kurt Cobain and Jimi Hendrix, she had become a captive of her own image. Like Janis Joplin, her lover was conspicuously absent towards the end. Many times, Amy had worn down other people because she had relied on them.

Kurt Cobain

On April 8, 1994, an electrician found the body of Kurt Cobain. The authors of Who Killed Kurt Cobain? offer a straightforward explanation: He took his own life. As proof of his mental state, he committed this act of abrupt, self-inflicted violence. Suicidal people tend to want to make a statement, Nial Stimson stated, referring to Kurt's fear of losing his home in a lawsuit. The musician's substance misuse therapist recalled this incident.

Brian Jones

It appears that Brian Jones' careless actions led to his 1969 death at his English country residence. It was a certain way to meet one's demise—to combine drugs and booze before plunging into the pool. Whatever the case may be, many in the rock and roll community continue to cast doubts on the official account of Jones' death, making it one of the most enduring mysteries in the genre. The cause of his death remains a mystery, according to Keith Richards. He said that some nasty business was going on, but he doesn't know what happened.

Jimi Hendrix

After staying with a girlfriend in London on the night of September 18, 1970, Jimi took some sleeping pills in the early hours of the morning. Neither the number of pills he swallowed nor his level of comprehension of their contents are certain. Vesparax, a powerful barbiturate, was the medicine. It's been said that one can sleep for eight hours after taking just half a tablet. Jimi might have ingested nine; he had been imbibing as well. Though it was consistent with his character, this was careless and stupid. While on the road for so long, Jimi developed the habit of consuming narcotics without judgement. His friend, Deering Howe, has alleged that he would take a handful of excrement without even knowing what it was.

Janis Joplin

Upon returning to her Hollywood hotel room following her final recording session, Janis' feelings of loneliness must have been palpable. One of her final songs, A Woman Left Lonely, conveys her realisation that her boyfriend was exploiting her. She retrieved her heroin injection equipment and inserted the needle into her left arm at approximately 1 am on October 4, 1970. After that, she grabbed a pack of cigarettes from the hotel's lobby machine and headed back to her room. As she began to strip, she turned to place her packet on the nightstand, locked the door, and stepped back. While doing so, she lost her balance, and the next day, her lifeless body was discovered on the floor. She had struck her face against a table.

Jim Morrison

As a result of Francis Ford Coppola's 1979 inclusion of The End in the score for Apocalypse Now, Jim Morrison's cult increased posthumously. Jim Morrison's cult grew when he passed away at the same age as Jimi, Janis, Brian, and Jimi. The 27 links underscored Jim's uniqueness, his predetermined demise, and the strange events unfolding around him. Because Jim's lover had passed away at the same age, the synchronicity was even more peculiar. By the time Kurt Cobain joined the club in 1994, this mythology was known to everyone who cared about popular music.