Whenever a musician dies at a young age, the world bows its head in sadness. However, when a posthumous album becomes that artist’s greatest masterwork, the tragedy deepens as he or she never got to witness how their creation changed our lives.

This is among the rarest of occurrences in the rock and metal world, so much that we could only think of seven musicians for this list. In most of these cases, an artist finished recording an album only to pass away in the short period of time between the recording’s completion and release.

Our community has heard few voices with the beauty and raw power of Janis Joplin. Joplin remains the standard bearer for female vocalists in rock, even after she died from an overdose at the young age of 27, before her solo opus Pearl was released and shot to No. 1 on Billboard. Sublime’s Bradley Nowell met a similar fate, he died just two months before releasing Sublime's self-titled album, another undisputed masterpiece which would have propelled Nowell to unimaginable heights.

See the 7 Musicians Who Died Before Releasing Their Masterpiece in the gallery below.

7 Musicians Who Died Before Releasing Their Masterpiece

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