The 27 Club & a BMJ study

Rory

Senior Member.
I would imagine anybody who knows anything about popular and rock music has heard of 'The 27 Club' - the idea that an unusual number of the world's most renowned rock musicians have died at the age of 27. First popularised in the early 70s following the deaths of Brian Jones, Jimi Hendrix, Janis Joplin and Jim Morrison it became even more well-known after the deaths of Kurt Cobain (1994) and Amy Winehouse (2011).

In reading the Wikipedia article on the subject I notice that it is referred to as "an urban legend that has been repeatedly disproven by research". Several citations have been provided in support of this, but all but one ultimately leads to the same study [note: now fixed] that appeared in the British Medical Journal in December 2011 - a study that, in my opinion, doesn't seem satisfactory.

The main problem, I feel, is that the definition of "famous musicians" is based on 1,046 solo artists and band members who scored a number one UK album between 1956 and 2007. This criteria in itself whittled down the members of the 27 Club to just three - Jones, Cobain and Winehouse - as neither Janis Joplin, Jimi Hendrix nor Jim Morrison reached #1 in the UK album charts (though they all did in the US). Likewise, "lesser members" such as Pete Ham (Badfinger - 14 million albums sold), Ron McKernan (The Grateful Dead - best UK chart position of 27 with American Beauty), Alan Wilson (Canned Heat - notable Woodstock performers who had worldwide hits), and Richey Edwards (Manic Street Preachers, missing at aged 27, presumed dead) all fail to make the cut.

In addition to these exclusions, the above criteria means the study included such luminaries as Jim Reeves, Ray Conniff, Rock Follies, The Muppets, The Kids from "Fame", Five Star, Johnny Hates Jazz, New Kids on the Block, Jesus Jones, Right Said Fred, 2 Unlimited, Chaka Demus & Pliers, Hear'Say, and (presumably) the singers and musicians who performed on the soundtrack albums for South Pacific, West Side Story and The Sound of Music.

Obviously some of those were somewhat famous and even somewhat good - but can they seriously be ranked alongside - and, indeed, instead of - the likes of Hendrix, Joplin and The Doors, etc? (Hendrix's debut album, by the way, may well have reached #1 if its release hadn't coincided with that of The Beatles' Sgt Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band.)

Their study therefore not only excludes most of the members of the so-called 27 Club but vastly swells the sample size with musicians who by general definition fail to meet the criteria of being truly famous and/or revered - and, indeed, many of whom may not even meet the general definition of "musician".

Having reduced the number of age 27 deaths to three the study concludes that there is no peak death incident at this age, but rather a statistically insignificant peak at 32 (four), and that the death rate at 27 (0.57 per 100 musician years) is similar enough to 25 (0.56) and 32 (0.54) to conclude that the notion "has been created by a combination of chance and cherry picking".

Looking a little closer, I notice that the death rate for those who expired aged 25 is based on only two incidences. Famous musicians who died at this age include Tupac Shakur, Randy Rhoads, and Paul Kossoff - none of whom had a UK #1 album (though, again, Tupac did have a #1 album in the States). Who the study is referring to, therefore, I'm unsure (presumably either a famous musician I didn't find or a non-famous musician who appeared in some form or other on a UK #1 album).

Famous musicians who died aged 32 were Keith Moon, John Bonham, Mama Cass and Karen Carpenter, while less famous musicians include Keith Godchaux (also The Grateful Dead), Ricky Wilson (The B-52's - pre-Cosmic Thing), Florence Ballard (The Supremes), and Rushton Moreve (Steppenwolf).

The Who, Led Zeppelin and The Carpenters all had UK #1 albums. The Supremes also did but not until after Ballard had been fired. This leaves one potentially non-famous 32 who nonetheless made the study.

All in all, even though I imagine it was merely a fun way for a group of academics to fill some time, it does seem rather a flawed way to go about investigating a well-known idea.

Here is a list of very famous musicians who died between the ages of 20 and 32:
  • 20 -
  • 21 - Eddie Cochran, Stuart Sutcliffe, Sid Vicious
  • 22 - Buddy Holly
  • 23 -
  • 24 - Duane Allman
  • 25 - Tupac Shakur, Randy Rhoads
  • 26 - Otis Redding
  • 27 - Jimi Hendrix, Janis Joplin, Brian Jones, Amy Winehouse, Jim Morrison, Kurt Cobain
  • 28 -
  • 29 - Hank Williams, Marc Bolan
  • 30 - Andy Gibb, Patsy Cline
  • 31 -
  • 32 - Keith Moon, John Bonham, Karen Carpenter, Mama Cass
Those in bold died in (what I consider) an at least somewhat self-induced manner. I may be missing some or I may have included some that weren't/aren't objectively "very famous" but either merely appear that way to me because of exposure and bias. Also some may have attained a greater level of fame precisely because they died young and were therefore immortalised and enshrined.

I did also consider the following people - Aaliyah (22), Ian Curtis (23), Cliff Burton, Tammi Terrell, Berry Oakley (all 24), Paul Kossoff (25), Nick Drake, Gram Parsons (26), Richey Edwards, plus those mentioned above (27), Brad Nowell, Steve Gaines, The Big Bopper, Tim Buckley (28), Ronnie Van Zant (29), Sandy Denny (31) - but I concluded (for subjective reasons) that they probably weren't genuinely famous/legendary.

Also to note: very famous musical legends who didn't die aged 20 to 32, such as Eric Clapton, Ginger Baker (80), David Bowie (69), Bob Dylan, Elvis Presley (42), Buddy Rich (69), Miles Davis (65), Marvin Gaye (44), Bob Marley (36), Madonna, Michael Jackson (50), Elton John, Rod Stewart, Bruce Springsteen, Johnny Cash (71), Mariah Carey, Eminem, Taylor Swift, Rihanna, Whitney Houston (48), Kanye West, Justin Bieber, and all the other members of The Who, Led Zeppelin, Queen (Freddy Mercury was 45), The Rolling Stones, The Beatles (John 40, George 58), Pink Floyd (Syd Barrett 60), The Eagles, AC/DC (Bon Scott 33), ABBA, The Police, Fleetwood Mac (Peter Green 73), etc, etc.

In a nutshell: I'm not saying that there's anything spooky or meaningful in the idea of 'The 27 Club' - but I will say that it does seem clear that the most famous/revered pop and rock musicians have expired at a greater frequency at the age of 27 than at any other non-elderly age - and this is especially true if we take the above list and count only those frontmen/women who class as genuine superstars (I make that five 27s compared with about seven or eight from all other years combined).

Of course, the sample size is small and therefore it could very much be down to coincidence and chance, as demonstrated by this small spreadsheet simulation using 15 "virtual superstars" who virtually died between the virtual ages of 20 and 32:

1655845144296.png
rng simulation showing that from a sample size of 15 spread over 13 years 5 deaths in one age year is perfectly within the bounds of chance

The only thing we can genuinely say is though more musical superstars have died at age 27 than at other ages it doesn't necessarily mean anything, nor can any apparent significance be disproved, because the sample size is too small; more data is required. And for that reason I would say that the conclusion of the BMJ study and the methodology used (the idea is about 'legends' not run-of-the-mill musicians) clearly constitutes "bunk". And that's the troubling part, and what inspired me to muse on this.

Wikipedia is the go-to place for initial research. Wikipedia tends very strongly towards the hyperrational and the mundane. Words such as "psuedoscience" and "disproven" are employed much too casually and freely. And supposed scientific studies and sources are very often quoted and presented as gospel without sufficient investigation and rigour.

This may be a problem, given the way our minds and views are shaped, or it may not be. While I personally don't believe there's enough evidence to support the notion of 'The 27 Club' I am disturbed by the narrowness of thought and dogma of such influential places like Wikipedia. So at least there's now somewhere googleable on the 'net where this one particular idea is questioned a little differently.

As well as my Wikipedia edits, if they survive. ;)
 
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FatPhil

Senior Member.
Some of the non-27 ages can be padded out a little more possibly. Jim Croce, Jeff Buckley (30), Minnie Riperton (31), Hillel Slovak (26), Tommy Bolin, Frankie Lymon (25).

I'm sure the numbers are too small to draw any firm conclusions - what does a chi-squared test say (including when you weight their buckets using death by misadventure stats)?
 

Rory

Senior Member.
Some of the non-27 ages can be padded out a little more possibly. Jim Croce, Jeff Buckley (30), Minnie Riperton (31), Hillel Slovak (26), Tommy Bolin, Frankie Lymon (25).

Yeah, I considered some of those but I decided they didn't really place among the upper echelon.

What does a chi-squared test say (including when you weight their buckets using death by misadventure stats)?

I guess it would depend on which set of data was being used. The other study on the subject, posted at The Conversation, does include a chi-squared test and also concludes that there's nothing statistically significant about age 27 (she says 56 is the most common age for musicians to die; mainly due to them dying quite a lot younger than the general population) but, again, the study sample includes all musicians, not just the cream of the crop.

Still, I think chi-squared and dilution aside it seems common sense to feel that one year could coincidentally account for a much larger number of deaths than others.

Let's use RNG to hypothesise 22 world class musicians who died between the ages of 20 and 32 (as above) and see what result proven chance gives us:

1655842086002.png

So, exactly akin to reality, we have a top result of 6 (aged 20) and 4 ages where no musicians died (just the first test I ran).

Probably in addition to complete randomness there's some bias that happens in real life - eg, the most common age of death may equal the most common age to become famous plus the most common length of time it takes to become completely and utterly burned out; quarter-life/edge of adulthood crises; as well as the biggest and brightest creative types perhaps being the most likely to crash and burn while young - but none of those seem necessary to explain the current standings given that they're well within the bounds of chance.
 
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deirdre

Senior Member.
Article:
The 27 Club is the idea that popular musicians, artists, and actors die at age 27 with statistically anomalous frequency


is that even true? i always thought the 27 club was like the mile high club. it had nothing to do with "statistical anomalies" but was just a club of famous rock n roll people who died at age 27.

if you boff on a plane, you become a member of the Mile High club.
if you "o.d" at age 27 you become a member of the 27 club.
 

Rory

Senior Member.
Is that even true? I always thought the 27 club was like the mile high club. it had nothing to do with "statistical anomalies" but was just a club of famous rock n roll people who died at age 27.

That's a good point - and perhaps if I cast my mind back 30 years or so that's how I would have thought about it when I first heard of these deaths.

I do think these days however some people tend to see something mysterious and meaningful in it. A person I recently met in real life, for example, told me that it made sense to them because of the astrological concept of a Saturn Return. Certainly, they felt it was "more than coincidence". And that there are studies attempting to debunk the notion of a statistical anomaly I guess shows that there is a notion of an anomaly.
 
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deirdre

Senior Member.
I do think these days however some people tend to see something mysterious and meaningful in it.
well in fairness, when the club FORMED it was a statistical anomaly. Not just because of age, but timeframe.
Brian Jones died which was a bummer but then a year later JIMMY FRICKEN HENDRIX died..which got people's real attention, then like 2 weeks later Joplin died ..which was major. but when Morrison also died like 6 months? after that, it just cemented "the Club".


Analogies with the Muppets are ridiculous. it wasnt #1 stars or albums, it was genius level performers. i dont know if Cobain technically fits as far as having that "je ne sais quoi", but i guess as a "voice/figurehead" of the generation he maybe fits.

like Hendrix, Joplin and Morrison even without winehouse, is a royal flush.
Keith Moon, John Bonham, Karen Carpenter, Mama Cass is a straight Ace high.*
Freddie Mercury (even by himself) is a full house, like Queens over kings.
or Prince (even by himself) is like a fullhouse Queens over ..jacks?



*keith moon maybe pushed them into fullhouse territory..i dont really know how to judge drummers. and some might reverse Prince and Mercury. my poker analogy is only meant to illustrate a point, not to be 100% accurate.
 

Rory

Senior Member.
Well in fairness, when the club FORMED it was a statistical anomaly.

That's very true - and probably it still is true.

I guess what some people mean is that it's a meaningful statistical anomaly - ie, something weird's going on. Like if I roll a dice six times and get six straight sixes that would be a statistical anomaly in many people's eyes. But is it meaningful? Only more data and investigation would show - ie, it could just be random chance - six straight sixes will appear sooner or later - or it could be because it's a loaded dice (or maybe a ghost is doing it).

Analogies with the Muppets are ridiculous. it wasnt #1 stars or albums, it was genius level performers.

Exactly - and that, I think, is the key point. Their study is debunked because they're basically strawmanning.

Really, the whole thing can be summed up very simply:

27 Club believers' hypothesis: an unusual number of musical superstars/geniuses have died at 27 (and it's weird)
Analysis: it's true that it's more than other years, but the sample size is far too small to either prove or disprove whether it's meaningful

Debunking study hypothesis: the 27 Club is disproven because equal numbers of musicians die at other ages
Analysis: yes, but we're talking about superstars/geniuses, not musicians in general

I like your poker analogy. I think that could really be developed - especially as it not only illustrates the notion of hierarchy, but because it demonstrates very clearly that extraordinary and extremely rare things do obviously come about through "chance".

Jim Croce was pretty darn famous.

I'd never heard of Jim Croce before looking into this, but checking out his stats I notice that of the three albums he released one went to number one, one to number two, and one to number seven (in the US), while his figures for Canada were even better (two number ones and a number two). That's mighty impressive (by comparison The Grateful Dead's highest charting album - of the 18 they released between 1967 and 1981 - only made it to number 12).

More than that though, mentioning him raises a really good point: a musician can be "famous"; can top the charts; can die young in tragic circumstances - and can still fail to acquire myth or legend status years down the line.

So perhaps the greats really are great for a reason, and not just because they "lived fast, died young" and became immortalised and enshrined.
 
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FatPhil

Senior Member.
Jim Croce was pretty darn famous.

To be honest, I can't recall or sing any of his songs, at least knowing that it was a Croce song, even though it was me who proffered his name. He's made enough ripples that I know that he was a very significant contributor to the music world. However I'd be amazed if anyone past their teens in the western world was unable to sing the songs Frankie Lymon and Minnie Riperton were most famous for. Put a few beers in me, and I'll give you a demo! Surely they're even more darn famous? Of course, it all depends on what you're exposed to, and you're not always exposed to the identities or origins of the songs that you've heard.

However, the wisdom of the crowds is the perfect solution to this question - just ask a wide range of different people. Of course, you have to be careful what you ask them, as even I've heard of Avicii, from seeing names on posters, ... <click - click - download - listen> ... I'd just question whether the same 4 chords repeated continually for 3 minutes should be classified as being the output of a "musician"! (Obviously, everything I listen to my mum wouldn't classify as "music" either.)
 

deirdre

Senior Member.
However I'd be amazed if anyone past their teens in the western world was unable to sing the songs Frankie Lymon and Minnie Riperton were most famous for.
i've never heard of them.

I'd never heard of Jim Croce before
he's no lou reed or Bob Dylan, but had some big hits. i still have his cd in my car. Time in a bottle was the biggest. a classic. (where as Hendrix i couldnt name one song)
and speaking of catching time in a bottle:
Source: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JzYf6qskdfA
 

deirdre

Senior Member.
oh the crossroads blues guy is in the 27 club too. he's pretty big. even if i do never remember his name.
Article:
Robert Johnson recorded chilling, folkloric songs about hellhounds, the Devil and general despair amid swinging, dissonant, sometimes off-kilter guitar lines – the likes of which have reverberated through rock & roll for decades. He recorded less than 50 songs – including ones later covered by Cream ("Cross Road Blues"),
 

Rory

Senior Member.
I was wondering if Jim Croce's records weren't released in the UK as there was no chart information on Wikipedia. Apparently they were - some originals available on eBay very cheap - though it doesn't look like any of his singles or LPs made the top 75.

Never heard of Frankie Lymon - but of course "Why Do Fools Fall in Love?" is a classic (and the band even wrote it).

Probably a lot of people don't know the name Minnie Riperton (I did) - but I'm sure many of us have had fun butchering the famous "whistle register" of the bridge.
 

deirdre

Senior Member.
Article:
When it was eventually issued as a 7", it [Time in a bottle] became his second and final No. 1 hit.[2] It was the third posthumous Billboard number-one hit after "Sittin' on the Dock of the Bay" by Otis Redding and "Me and Bobby McGee" by Janis Joplin.[3]


i will note i had never heard of Amy Winehouse before her death articles. But she does have a beautiful voice. so yea, it's hard to really pinpoint if there are other alive artists that are at the level of say hendrix that we just dont know about and who SHOULD be counted in any "study".

like there's a big debate if Eddie van Halen was better than Hendrix. i dont know if Eddie had a number one album in the uk though, so he might not even be part of that OP study. but i bet history will remember Hendrix way longer than Eddie because he died young.
 

Rory

Senior Member.
like there's a big debate if Eddie van Halen was better than Hendrix. but i bet history will remember Hendrix way longer than Eddie because he died young.

Well then, let's settle that once and for all: Van Halen faster, Hendrix "better". :)

Also, many more reasons history so treasures Hendrix beyond dying young.
 
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tinkertailor

Senior Member.
I've always felt like substance abuse may cause deaths in peaks. I feel like people who use hard drugs or heavy alcohol may be more likely to die from it at certain ages in their mid to late 20s, because they've been using for longer and their bodies are aging. I have circumstantial evidence of this; something like 5 people I know or know of overdosed on opiates at the age of ~26-27. Given that I'm around that age, it could just be a sampling error since I mostly know people around my age, but it would explain some of these deaths. Plus, the heroin and opiates of today are wildly different from those of the '70s, but maybe there's a trend overall based on addiction and general hard living.
 

Mendel

Senior Member.
yea but dying young really helps elevate your staying power, like Sid Vicious and Marilyn Monroe. River Phoenix. etc.
tell that to Bob Dylan, Paul McCartney, Mick Jagger, Paul Simon, ...
... Audrey Hepburn, Sean Connery, ....

Implying the work of the famous died-young artists wasn't good enough to stand the test of time is an unkind insult.
 
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Mendel

Senior Member.
The main problem, I feel, is that the definition of "famous musicians" is based on 1,046 solo artists and band members who scored a number one UK album between 1956 and 2007.
Methodically, that's the prerequisite for rigor, though: to stake out a set of unbiased selection criteria, and not a subjective collection where bias can't be ruled out.

You have these musicians who randomly died at the same age so soon after each other that people notice an "anomaly", and after that every 27-yo death gets noted as evidence while the others sail under radar. That's a cognitive bias, and you can only overcome it by setting objective sampling criteria.

The other thing you're doing, Rory, is to go from 1000 musicians to just "legends", which means you are reducing the sample size, and thus giving greater weight to the anomaly you started with. You already know from your own previous posts that small sample sizes often lead to random effects that look more meaningful than they actually are.

What's more, beyond the statistical anomaly, there's still no causal explanation for the "27 club" that goes beyond speculation. It's an urban legend.
 

Rory

Senior Member.
dying young really helps elevate your staying power

I think that's true for the most part - though Jim Croce may disagree.

I guess we'll never know which early exiters might have been less remembered if they'd stuck around and which would always have been idolised. David Bowie was one who lived long enough to (in the words of Stewart Lee) "gradually decrease the quality of his obituary" - and probably even more so in the case of Bob Dylan - but I believe they are and will be as fondly remembered as their "ever young" contemporaries.

Alas, one of those things we can never have a control group for. :(
 

FatPhil

Senior Member.
Those who die at their youthful or groundbreaking peak will always be remembered at that peak, when the memories of them are Kodak moments. (as per @deirdre)

Those who don't die before they get old will be remembered for being great and for doing what they were doing for a long time, both positive attributes, but very seldom for being great for a long time. (as per Stewart Lee via @Rory)

I'm heavily into a lot of "dinosaurs", but when people ask if I'm going to see them on their comeback-on-a-lifeglug tour, I almost always say "aren't they dead yet?". I don't want their greatness tarnished. Other opinions are available.
 

DavidB66

Senior Member
From random general knowledge, it strikes me that a fair number of major rock/pop artists have died in road or air crashes: at least Buddy Holly, Eddie Cochran, Otis Redding, Marc Bolan, Jim Reeves, Stevie Ray Vaughan, most of Lynyrd Skynyrd (a name I never expected to write) and a very popular middle-of-the road country/rock singer whose name slips my mind just now [John Denver!]. But probably not more than you would expect among a group of people who travelled a great deal at a time when cars and planes were not as safe as now. Also, a lot of the air crashes were in helicopters or private planes not subject to the same safety regime as scheduled air liners.
 

deirdre

Senior Member.
From random general knowledge, it strikes me that a fair number of major rock/pop artists have died in road or air crashes: at least Buddy Holly, Eddie Cochran, Otis Redding, Marc Bolan, Jim Reeves, Stevie Ray Vaughan, most of Lynyrd Skynyrd (a name I never expected to write) and a very popular middle-of-the road country/rock singer whose name slips my mind just now [John Denver!].

jim croce. :)
 

CaptainCourgette

Active Member
From random general knowledge, it strikes me that a fair number of major rock/pop artists have died in road or air crashes: at least Buddy Holly, Eddie Cochran, Otis Redding, Marc Bolan, Jim Reeves, Stevie Ray Vaughan, most of Lynyrd Skynyrd (a name I never expected to write) and a very popular middle-of-the road country/rock singer whose name slips my mind just now [John Denver!]. But probably not more than you would expect among a group of people who travelled a great deal at a time when cars and planes were not as safe as now. Also, a lot of the air crashes were in helicopters or private planes not subject to the same safety regime as scheduled air liners.
why should that be strange? their stock and trade for a lot of them is, touring (on the road)
heres dylands never ending tour https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Never_Ending_Tour goin on 34 years now, >3000 shows, occasionally I assume more than 1 show in one place but I dont think he ever took up residence anywhere, so theres a shitton of travelling (and hes not dead).
 

deirdre

Senior Member.
from actual evidence
cherry picking evidence is not "actual" evidence. and Rory (we) are trying to determine actual evidence by first discussing what would count as apples to apples evidence.

either way, it's ironic that what makes legends/artists legendary is that they don't have "computer" brains. The BMJ study is like a weird computer brain that somehow thinks the Muppets and the kids from the Fame movie are somehow remotely equivalent to Jimi Hendrix or Amy Winehouse or Johnny Rotten or even the lame Paul McCartney. The reality is ... they aren't.
 

Rory

Senior Member.
Indeed. It's a debunk of the studies, and seeing as this was achieved within the first few posts we're now just chatting about music, musicians and death.

the lame Paul McCartney

Oh, I dunno: he's got some pretty lovely tunes.

Though thinking of him - should he be pencilled in as a tentative 24? ;)
 

FatPhil

Senior Member.
rarely did their greatness end before 30

No-one said, or even hinted, otherwise.

but no matter, this thread has long vied away from actual evidence and into a reality different from the one I live in

You're clearly enjoying the discussion as you're introducing your own arguments to it. OK, they're not arguing against anyone else's arguments, but still, it's a start.
 

FatPhil

Senior Member.
cherry picking evidence is not "actual" evidence. and Rory (we) are trying to determine actual evidence by first discussing what would count as apples to apples evidence.

either way, it's ironic that what makes legends/artists legendary is that they don't have "computer" brains. The BMJ study is like a weird computer brain that somehow thinks the Muppets and the kids from the Fame movie are somehow remotely equivalent to Jimi Hendrix or Amy Winehouse or Johnny Rotten or even the lame Paul McCartney. The reality is ... they aren't.

Indeed - a lot of the "legends" are generally considered *creative* geniuses - not necessarily for creating something from whole cloth afresh (which is almost impossible), but at least being inventive - many for pushing boundaries or blending styles and traditions, or even just breathing new life back into something that had faded with a fresh twist. Fame and muppets have no creative element at all. They're fronts, and sometimes, they aren't even performing artists!

Charts don't accurately measure "legend" status, nor genius, nor perception of either of those things. And restricting the study to UK charts, and only number 1s, was beyond idiotic, the so-called academic should be ashamed of himself for such a poor choice. It doesn't make his conclusion (no real spike at 27) wrong, but an invalid derivation of a correct result is still invalid.
 

DavidB66

Senior Member
why should that be strange?
I didn't say it was! (and I gave reasons for thinking it probably wasn't.)

We tend to forget how dangerous cars once were. No seat belts, let alone air bags, little protection against crushing, and a prevalently casual attitude towards drink driving. I just found this source, which shows how dramatically US road deaths per vehicle mile have fallen (about 10-fold) since the 1960s:

https://injuryfacts.nsc.org/motor-vehicle/historical-fatality-trends/deaths-and-rates/

Air crash deaths per passenger mile have probably also fallen dramatically, though I haven't bothered to check.
 

Mauro

Active Member
I did also consider the following people - .... Ian Curtis (23), .... - but I concluded (for subjective reasons) that they probably weren't genuinely famous/legendary.

Aww... Ian Curtis not a legend? I seriously disagree in the strongest of manners, sir! I also cringe every time I see Amy Winehouse quoted together with Jimi Hendrix and Janis Joplin, was Winehouse a rock musician at all? Get her out and get Jim Croce in instead! :)
 
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Rory

Senior Member.
Sorry sir! After careful consideration I classed him as "mostly famous cos dead" rather than "woulda been legendary either way".

I could be persuaded on Amy Winehouse though. Or maybe she was the Janis Joplin of her time (and vice versa)?
 

FatPhil

Senior Member.
Sorry sir! After careful consideration I classed him as "mostly famous cos dead" rather than "woulda been legendary either way".

I could be persuaded on Amy Winehouse though. Or maybe she was the Janis Joplin of her time (and vice versa)?

However, I don't remember the Janis Joplin baby mice vid. (I just rewatched the AW one - it's just as creepy as I remember, shudder.)
 

Ann K

Active Member
Since I have neither the knowledge or the desire to know anything more about current popular musicians, I haven't been following this thread. But regarding statistics, don't you need to throw in something like a regrettable tendency of young people with oodles of money to overindulge in fast cars or strong drugs, thus providing them with dangerous situations that would skew the numbers? Perhaps a comparison with highly paid professional athletes would show a similar trend.
 

Rory

Senior Member.
I don't know if athletes would be the thing: they're not exactly known for their booze and drugs lifestyles.
 
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