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Most unfortunate rock band break-up?


Which band breakup was the most unfortunate loss?  

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  1. 1. Which band breakup was the most unfortunate loss?

    • The Beatles
    • Nirvana
    • The Jimi Hendrix Experience
    • Sublime
    • Bob Marley and the Wailers
    • The Doors
    • Guns & Roses
    • STP
    • The Clash

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I recently responded to another music related thread and it got me thinking about how many of my favorite albums were from bands I'll never hear from again. Whether it was drugs, plane crashes, suicides, or just the drummer getting caught with the lead singer's wife, there's been way too many great bands broken apart over the years for various reasons.


I put together a simple list of some of the more prominent ones to chose from. I realize there's many more you can make a case for, but I decided to stick with these for fairly obvious reasons. Bands like Floyd, Skynard, The Grateful Dead, The Eagles, and Van Halen have suffered breakups for one reason or another. But all of them have made up, or reformed, and continue to record and tour to some extent.


And while bands like STP, Guns N Roses, and The Smiths could realistically reform at any given time, the chances are probably slim.


I know this poll could go many different directions due to the eclectic musical tastes in here, so let's give it a shot. I had a really tough time giving my vote to just one, but I went with Bob Marley. Somehow I feel that might be the only vote he gets. We'll see, I guess.

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Since WHAM wasn't a choice I went with the Clash. I was a big fan back in the day, but never got a chance to see them live!


I also have to add Sisters of Mercy, becasue back in my Goth/Deathrock days I would have killed to see them live.



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1. Beatles breakup was a bummer. I still cringe when someone comes along and says that Wings was another incarnation of the Beatles. No way! Lennons last album, in my opinion, was much closer to(almost a continuation) in style and spirit of the later Beatles work.


2. Jim Croce - Who knows what could have been? Great stuff! Still gets decent play on the oldies stations.


3. The Carpenters - Just kidding!


My real choice for # 3 - Led Zepellin. Gotta have the whole package. Page and Plant together don't make it.

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I had to go with GNR.


Beatles - before my time so I don't know any different.

Nirvana - Didn't really break up, Cobain shot himself.

The Jimi Hendrix Experience - again, didn't really break up. OD

Sublime - Again, didn't really break up, but they sucked anyway.

Bob Marley and the Wailers - This was a sad one, but again ... didn't break up.

The Doors - Another non Break-Up.

Guns & Roses - This was my vote. Such a good thing, got ruined. I actually saw them multiple times, even before Appetite. Went to JHS and HS with the original drummers brother and actually did get to jam with Steven Adler once.

STP - This came close to getting my vote, such wasted potential, their first 2 albums are still among my fav's.

The Clash - Also almost got my vote.

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^^ If a band member dies (specifically a lead singer), then I'd say the band has been "broken," wouldn't you?


I mean, I hear what you're saying, but of all the bands listed, how many are currently still together, and playing music? In Nirvana's case, for example, Cobain pretty much forced a "breakup" by blowing his brains out, you know? Not a breakup where differing opinioins force band members to go their separate ways or anything, but a "breakup" nonetheless.

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If a band member dies (specifically a lead singer), then I'd say the band has been "broken," wouldn't you?


I agree, If the rest of the band decides not replace the deceased band member and continue on under the same name, then yes they have effectively broken up.. The bands in the list that actually fall under this are Bob Marley, Nirvana, Jimi Hendrix and Sublime.


"The Doors - Another non Break-Up

The Doors went on to release 2 albums after Morrison died, so technically they did break up for other reasons other than death of a band member.


I voted for GnR. GnR technically hasn't broken up, but GnR as we knew and love has. Axl is the only original member and he has made mostly a negative reputation for himself. On top of that he is probably the reason the other band members left, and the new members cant even count on him to show up to a gig. I agree that the band is ruined and should break up if anything.


I wish Pantera was on the list.. Thats one broken up band -with no chance of reunion- that I miss like crazy.

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It isn't official, but Tonic seems to be broken up. They've all been working on solo albums for the last four years. They're my all time favorite.


I think Van Halen is done. They're right behind Tonic in my list of favorites. I went to the last tour and it was really sad. Eddie is in bad shape. He's had so much of his tongue and jaw removed you can't understand a thing he said. The whole night seemed like it was a "last hurrah" event the way the guys were acting.

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Kurt Cobain didn't blow his brains out, Courtney Love took care of it for him.

Since I believe that his 'suicide' note was really a 'goodbye to my music career' letter, I think they were probably already broken up.


But I choose The Beatles as the most unfortunate band break up.

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The Clash gets my vote - they kind of imploded, it's a shame because they could have kept going.


Guns and Roses was a sad waste, because Axl wouldn't take his medication but I guess there isn't a cure or way of medicating against being a dickhead.

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Stone Temple Pilots, definitely. I really loved basically everything they put out, and found them to be genuinely talented, where lots of other alternative bands just faked it.

I also found Soundgarden and Alice in Chains to be unfortunate break ups (though Alice in Chains was also due to a death).



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Ah, Soundgarden!!! I loved them!!! It is a shame they broke up.. Which reminds me.... What about Rage Against the Machine? Their breakup is a shame as well. The coup de grâce is the formation of Audioslave, that in itself is a shame.


When somebody's spouse dies you don't say they "Broke-Up". They are widow's, etc.


I see what you are saying. The only difference I see though, is that a band can still choose to move on under the same name and not lose their identity/sucess even after the death of a band member (AC/DC for example).

Some bands do not move on after a death and end up breaking up because of it.

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Well you guys probably all know who i'm going to pick.......(just look at my username)




I was so sad the day i found out that The Beatles weren't together (couple years ago when i started buying their albums). It's such a shame, George was blossoming when they broke and i'm sure that we would have some more "all time hits" if they had kept together.


I also love The Doors and GNR, any bands break up is terribly sad.

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