Plane crashes. Substance abuse. Gun violence. All 15 of the artists on this list of musicians, rappers, and singers were taken at a flourishing point in their careers, and devoted fans continue to mourn their loss.
Mortality is part of life, but when the artists we worship pass away, the loss felt is different. For many, their idols in music serve as inspirational totems, and seeing the following talents meet their gone-too-soon death on the earlier side of their careers was hugely jarring. From Rock and Roll Hall of Famers to VH1 Hop Hop Honorees, our list will summon nostalgia for even the most fair-weather music fan.