Musicians Legacies Live On – Alaina Sayre

Hundreds of influential musicians have died, leaving their fans, family and friends distraught. To keep their memories alive, it is important to talk about their careers and how their deaths devastated their respective communities.

  Lead Singer of Nirvana, Kurt Cobain created music that influenced millions of people. Essentially spearheading the grunge movement along with bands like Pearl Jam and Soundgarden, Kurt Cobain’s attitude on the music created an environment for grunge to thrive. 

     Cobain’s addiction to various drugs and alcohol led to his death, yet fans of the band tend to blame his death on his wife. Kurt Cobain and Courtney Love were married in 1992, just two years before his death. They had a notoriously unhealthy marriage. Their one child, Frances Bean Cobain,  lived with her grandmother for most of her childhood, because of her mothers unhealthy addiction. 

     April 5 1994, Kurt Cobain died of an overdose. Many fans were distraught. All of his fans felt a deep connection to him, and his death was a hard blow for people everywhere. Cobain often blamed the media for causing his mental downfall, a pressure in which many musicians face. 

     For example, Amy Winehouse was another musician plagued by the media’s attempt at controlling her life. During her life, the media were relentless in their focused attacks and studies of Winehouse. Winehouse suffered from not only a struggle to stay away from drugs and alcohol but suffered from manic depression and an eating disorder. The media famously crossed the line between journalism and exploitation numerous times in her life. 

     Amy Winehouse was known for her vocals that were commonly compared to jazz and rhythm-and-blues legends Sarah Vaughan, Dinah Washington, and Billie Holiday. Her album Back To Black broke numerous records. At the 50th GRAMMY awards, Winehouse was given Best New Artist honors, Back to Black was named Best Pop Vocal Album and “Rehab” earned wins for Record Of The Year, Song Of The Year and Best Female Pop Vocal Performance.

     In 2011, Winehouse was supposed to go on a comeback tour, but was cut short after she appeared to be drunk on the first night. Over a month after that show, Winehouse was found dead with a blood alcohol level of .416.

     Third and finally, Jeff Buckley was known as one of the most remarkable musical artists of his generation, acclaimed by audiences, critics and musicians alike. The son of folk-rocker Tim Buckley, he was a powerful, emotive singer who possessed vocals none had ever seen before. Rolling Stone magazine has named Buckley among the greatest singers and alternative artists of all time. His career was like none other. His debut album Grace broke numerous records, making the top 50 greatest debut albums of all time.

     Buckley was always known as a free spirit, which inevitably led to his death in 1997. While awaiting the arrival of his band from New York, he drowned during a spontaneous evening swim in the Mississippi River, where he was caught in the wake of a passing boat.

     Musicians leave legacies that influence listeners for decades. To continue their legacy, it is important to talk about their lives and careers. The impact these artists left on the music industry forever changed the way people look at music. These musicians were arguably the best of their time and it is unfortunate we never got to see the rest of their careers. 


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