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The 27s

The concept of The 27 Club has been around at least since the death of Kurt Cobain in 1994, but it was nothing more than a bumper-sticker though. “Huh, isn’t it weird that Jimi Hendrix, Janis Joplin, Jim Morrison, and Kurt Cobain all died at the age of 27?”

When we set out to research The 27s—The Greatest Myth of Rock & Roll you could hardly find information about the so-called 27 Club online. Sifting through stacks of old magazines, rock biographies, official death records, and seeking out old lovers and band mates we were able to gain a complete picture, and with it, an understanding of what The 27s really meant. We self-published the book in 2008 and Random House took it international on the 15th anniversary of Kurt Cobain’s death. NPR’s All Things Considered interviewed Eric, which resulted in additional coverage from Australia’s ABC to Vermont Public Radio.

When Amy Winehouse (14 September 1983 – 23 July 2011) died at age 27 we were caught by surprise. We were headed out the door to go surfing when CNN and Al Jazeera called us for on-camera comments about the breaking story. Suddenly, rock’s greatest phenomenon went viral.

Scroll down to read what others have said about The 27s—The Greatest Myth of Rock & Roll.

Media requests
Author Eric Segalstad and illustrator Josh Hunter are available for comments or information about The 27 Club. We spent three years researching The 27s—The Greatest Myth of Rock & Roll, the definitive resource on music’s most haunted topic. You can reach one of us here.

    The 27s book:

  • Featured on CNN, NPR, Al Jazeera, and in the Washington Post
  • Self-published book from 2008 distributed worldwide by Random House
  • Medalist of the 2009 Independent Publishing Award
  • Non-linear story lines and illustrated throughout

Interviews
Listen to an interview with author Eric Segalstad about Amy Winehouse and The 27 Club on The Takeaway, July 25, 2011:

Listen to The Takeaway

“The 27s uses stylized artwork, and employs music history, maps, timelines, musical references and recommendations, mysticism, and involved essays to provide various theories on why the phenomenon of musical geniuses dying by 27 exists.”—Mike Ragogna, Huffington Post
“The deaths of these rock stars at the age of 27 really changed the way we look at rock music.”—Robert Smith, National Public Radio’s All Things Considered
“As much as this book is about The 27s, it is about music; about America; about the art and perils of the music industry; about the mystique behind death at age 27; and finally about history itself. The 27s is a must read for anyone interested in knowing more about the greatest musicians of modern times. It’s presented like a resonance of sound in the clearest grain of a violin. Well done!”—Ian Halperin, NY Times bestselling author/filmmaker, Director of The film The Cobain Case, Author of Who Killed Kurt Cobain and Love and Death: The Murder of Kurt Cobain
“In addition to a music history, The 27s is also an artistically arresting book, thanks to Hunter’s eye-popping artwork, which is woven through the text in the manner of a graphic novel. It can be read linearly, or at random.”—Phil Kloer, Atlanta Journal of Constitution
“A wild and creative romp through the crazy but true world of the phenomenon of rock stars dying far too young. The graphic novel approach to this book is vividly wild, and fantastic…”—Charles R. Cross, author of Room Full of Mirrors: A Biography of Jimi Hendrix and Heavier Than Heaven: A Biography of Kurt Cobain
“If you’re a rock-an-roller, watch out once you hit the age of 27.”—Patricia Sullivan, Washington Post
“Despite never focusing on a single person for long, it’s clear that they fully understand the essence of each subject’s artistry.”Performing Songwriter
“The 27s maps out the stories of some of our most beloved musicians through a very compelling myth and, in that way, brings to life the musicians whose deaths seemed so untimely. Hunter’s graphic novel-styled illustrations—drawings of musicians, colorfully stylized quotes and sidebars, maps, silhouettes, images of the roads and pills that killed The 27s, scraps of the suicide notes—swirl around Segalstad’s intriguing, non-linear storylines, creating a highly-stylized but absolutely in-depth snapshot of the history of rock & roll.”—Erika Fredrickson of the Missoula Independent
“What you’ve put together really is amazing… The illustrations are integral to the whole presentation… It’s fascinating; it’s truly unusual.”—legendary Canadian radio personality Roy Green
“The paradoxically lively tome explores the grisly mystery in vivid yet reverential detail, from household names like Janis and Jimi to lesser known but nonetheless influential artists such as early R&B singer Jesse Belvin, Big Star’s Chris Bell and more recent inductees including The Mars Volta’s Jeremy Michael Ward.” —Dan Bolles of Burlington’s Seven Days
“This Rock Epistle goes from cool to creepy and back to cool. The tone of the book is magical and modern, a little sad but goes to the wealth of material these artists produced and applauds their passion. Hendrix did Carson? Yes! Some amazing facts come to light in this amazing new book.”—Victoria Joyce of Sugarbuzz magazine