If there actually is a rock heaven, it's overpopulated. The music world simply has far too many casualties, especially when rock stars reach the age of 27, which was how old Kurt Cobain, Amy Winehouse, Janis Joplin, and Jimi Hedrix all were when they died.
We will always wonder what such amazing talents might have achieved had they lived, but we no longer have to wonder what they might have looked like thanks to the fascinating "Rock Heaven" project by Sachs Media Group. They've teamed up with "photo restoration and manipulation company" Phojoe to imagine what various legends would look like today, including Cobain, Bob Marley, John Lennon, Mama Cass, Elvis, Jim Morrison, Hendrix, Joplin, Karen Carpenter and more.
Bob Marley Died: 1981 Age: 36
<a href="http://sachsmedia.com/rockheaven/#sthash.dnWXuQ4k.dpuf" target="_blank">Insights by Dr. Reebee Garofalo and Elijah Wald</a>: “Marley’s success was globally inspirational in a way no previous superstar had been. Had he lived, he would undoubtedly have gone beyond his collaborations with Jamaican, American and British musicians, becoming the central figure in the ‘world music’ explosion and forging new fusions with artists from Africa, Latin America and Asia. Given his international stature and his devotion to the varied styles of the African diaspora, he would have been a dream partner for stars like the Fugees and Kanye West. It is also likely he would have also attempted to use his influence beyond the musical domain, challenging the ongoing dominance of the old colonial powers and serving as a spokesman for people of color around the world.”
Kurt Cobain Died: 1994 Age: 27
<blockquote><a href="http://sachsmedia.com/rockheaven/#sthash.dnWXuQ4k.dpuf" target="_blank">Insights by Dr. Reebee Garofalo and Elijah Wald</a></blockquote>: “Given his aversion to celebrity, had Cobain lived he would likely have continued to work with Nirvana but also explored smaller, less commercial projects with other players, trying to recapture some of the anonymity and artistic freedom of his early years. He would probably have pursued artistic outlets offstage and behind the scenes, eschewing the limelight and using his fame to bring attention to young musicians on the cutting edge, as well as exploring his deep interest in Americana styles by producing and collaborating with older roots artists.”
John Lennon Died: 1980 Age: 40
<a href="http://sachsmedia.com/rockheaven/#sthash.dnWXuQ4k.dpuf" target="_blank">Insights by Dr. Reebee Garofalo and Elijah Wald</a>: “Having retired from the music business and devoted himself to fatherhood, Lennon returned with a new maturity and would have been likely to continue his social activism with more focus. He paved the way for such musical activists as Bob Geldof and Bono, but given his talent and fame could have accomplished even greater things. Given what he had done already, it is hard to put limits on what he might have attempted, and it seems safe to assume he would have continued to surprise even his most devoted followers. He might have been the first classic rocker to embrace the hip-hop revolution, composed avant-garde experimental music, gone back to his roots by forming a hard-rocking guitar quartet, or most likely would have experimented with all of those alternatives and more. (And yes, he almost certainly would have stayed with Yoko Ono.)”
Jimi Hendrix Died: 1970 Age: 27
<a href="http://sachsmedia.com/rockheaven/#sthash.dnWXuQ4k.dpuf" target="_blank">Insights by Dr. Reebee Garofalo and Elijah Wald</a>: “At the time of his death, Hendrix had become frustrated with the limitations of rock and was discussing a duet project with Miles Davis. This would have opened up new worlds to both artists, and could have been the defining masterpiece of jazz-rock fusion. He would also undoubtedly have continued his innovative explorations of new sound technologies, and created increasingly complex and ambitious long-form compositions. Though in the process he would have moved further from the hit-focused rock-pop mainstream, he would have provided a bridge between the funk-jazz of Parliament and the growing experimental rock movement, and could now be reigning as the pioneer, father figure and supreme master of the jam-band scene.”
Janis Joplin Died: 1970 Age: 27
<a href="http://sachsmedia.com/rockheaven/#sthash.dnWXuQ4k.dpuf" target="_blank">Insights by Dr. Reebee Garofalo and Elijah Wald</a>: “The pace and intensity of Joplin’s lifestyle and singing were unsustainable, and she would almost certainly have experienced a collapse of some kind in the early 1970s. However, by the 1980s she could have returned with the wisdom and depth of that experience, re-emerging like similarly troubled peers such as Joe Cocker and Tina Turner. Her voice would undoubtedly have lost much of its screaming power, but gained control. She could have surrounded herself with the best sidemen available and created music that – while it would have been less raw and wild than her youthful work – would have been surer, deeper and just as passionately soulful.”
Cass Elliot Died: 1974 Age: 33
<a href="http://sachsmedia.com/rockheaven/#sthash.dnWXuQ4k.dpuf" target="_blank">Insights by Dr. Reebee Garofalo and Elijah Wald</a>: “Unlike most 1960s rockers, Cass was completely at home with cabaret and theater performance styles. At the time of her death she was already appearing in prestigious venues such as the London Palladium, and with her powerful voice might have built an enduring career as a solo concert diva on the order of Bette Midler or Barbra Streisand. As one of the rock world’s great ensemble singers, it seems likely that she would also have continued to work in group settings, perhaps adding her soulful harmony to superstar collaborations like the Linda Ronstadt-Dolly Parton-Emmylou Harris trio.”
Elvis Presley Died: 1977 Age: 42
<a href="http://sachsmedia.com/rockheaven/#sthash.dnWXuQ4k.dpuf" target="_blank">Insights by Dr. Reebee Garofalo and Elijah Wald</a>: “As long as Colonel Parker remained his manager, Presley would have been unlikely to make any dramatic changes of artistic direction – but it is not hard to imagine the Colonel opening an Elvis Grand Casino in Las Vegas where the ‘King of Rock and Roll’ could have held court throughout the years. After Parker’s death in 1997, Elvis might have branched out. Like his old Sun labelmate Johnny Cash, he might have put himself in the hands of young rock producers and revisited his blues and country roots, making stripped-down albums that would have won him a new following of young hipsters. Given his command of older pop styles, he would also have been an obvious first choice for the Frank Sinatra and Tony Bennett superstar duet projects.”
Jim Morrison Died: 1971 Age: 27
<a href="http://sachsmedia.com/rockheaven/#sthash.dnWXuQ4k.dpuf" target="_blank">Insights by Dr. Reebee Garofalo and Elijah Wald</a>: “Of all the 1960s rockers who died young, Morrison is the most difficult to pin down in terms of where his artistic muse might have taken him, given his broad range of interests not only in music but also in poetry, film and theater. He undoubtedly would have been involved in the explosion of independent filmmaking in the 1970s, and was perhaps the only rock star of his generation who would have been completely at home in the punk rock movement of the 1970s and later alternative scenes. Alternatively, he might have abandoned music entirely, devoted himself to writing, moved to New York, Paris, Tokyo or Dakar, and by now be honored by a few cognoscenti as an experimental avant-gardist rather than revered by millions as a rock star.”
Karen Carpenter Died: 1983 Age: 32
<a href="http://sachsmedia.com/rockheaven/#sthash.dnWXuQ4k.dpuf" target="_blank">Insights by Dr. Reebee Garofalo and Elijah Wald</a>: “At the time of Karen’s death, the Carpenters were in transition. She had explored solo projects while Richard dealt with some personal issues, but they were back together and cementing their global popularity with international tours. They would likely have continued to build on the foundation of their classic hits, touring and playing top venues, and in the 21st century might well have established their own showcase theater in Las Vegas, placing them in the company of such stars as Prince and Bette Midler.”
Keith Moon Died: 1978 Age: 32
<a href="http://sachsmedia.com/rockheaven/#sthash.dnWXuQ4k.dpuf" target="_blank">Insights by Dr. Reebee Garofalo and Elijah Wald</a>: “Though he occasionally experimented with side projects, Keith Moon was always first and foremost the heartbeat, clown and spectacular lunatic of the Who, and his career would have continued to be wrapped up with his longtime bandmates. Had he lived, the Who would not have broken up in the 1980s and could have continued on a par with the Rolling Stones, making new albums and selling out stadiums around the world. The music would not have changed all that much, but new generations of fans would have a chance to see them with the magnificent madman Moon on drums.”
Bobby Darin Died: 1973 Age: 37
<a href="http://sachsmedia.com/rockheaven/#sthash.dnWXuQ4k.dpuf" target="_blank">Insights by Dr. Reebee Garofalo and Elijah Wald</a>: ”At the time of his death, Darin was increasingly focusing on politics and the ‘turbulent aspects of modern society.’ Having traveled with Bobby Kennedy, he might well have entered the political arena, perhaps returning to New York to challenge the Rockefeller machine. With his commitment to social change, he would undoubtedly have been a mainstay at major events like Live Aid. And with his breadth of taste and talent he might have expanded the range of artists involved in those projects, bringing in friends from the world of Hollywood and Las Vegas. As he grew older, he would probably have concentrated more deeply on his acting career, and might in the end have been better known for his activism and acting than his music.” - See more at: http://sachsmedia.com/rockheaven/#sthash.dnWXuQ4k.dpuf
Dennis Wilson Died: 1983 Age: 39
<a href="http://sachsmedia.com/rockheaven/#sthash.dnWXuQ4k.dpuf" target="_blank">Insights by Dr. Reebee Garofalo and Elijah Wald</a>: “Though his solo projects were personally satisfying, Wilson would have continued to be known principally for his work with the Beach Boys. Aside from touring the world with his bandmates, he would have appeared in all-star shows with fellow rock legends, made occasional albums with musician friends (one can’t help musing about a duet project with long-time friend and lover Christine McVie), and perhaps would have added luster to his brother Brian’s phenomenal comeback.”
Shirley Temple Black, iconic child star and former U.S. ambassador to Ghana and Czechoslovakia, <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/02/11/shirley-temple-dead-child-star-ambassador-dies_n_4765333.html?1392116282&ncid=edlinkusaolp00000009" target="_blank">died on Feb. 10, 2014 in California</a>, The Associated Press reported. Her cause of death was not released. She was 85.
Philip Seymour Hoffman
<a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/02/02/philip-seymour-hoffman-dead-dies_n_4713623.html" target="_blank">Hoffman was found dead of an apparent heroin overdose</a> on Feb. 2, 2014 in New York City. He was 46 years old.
The American troubadour, folk singer and activist Seeger died Jan. 27, 2014, at age 94.
Avery died at the age of 68 from complications following open heart surgery in a Los Angeles suburb hospital on Dec. 31, 2013
Price died on Dec. 16, 2013 at his Texas home after a long battle with pancreatic cancer. He was 87.
The legendary actor of the stage and screen died on Dec. 14, 2013 following a long illness. He was 81.
After suffering from a prolonged respiratory infection, Mandela died on Dec. 5, 2013 at the age of 95.
<a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/11/30/paul-walker-dead_n_4366214.html?utm_hp_ref=celebrity" target="_blank">Walker died in a car crash on Nov. 30, 2013</a>, his rep confirmed. He was 40.
<a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/10/27/lou-reed-dead_n_4167976.html" target="_blank">Reed died of a "liver-related ailment"</a> on Oct. 27, 2013 at the age of 71.
<a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/10/26/maria-wallace-dead-simpsons_n_4166343.html" target="_blank">Wallace died of complications due to pneumonia</a> on Oct. 25, 2013 at the age of 70.
<a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/10/16/ed-lauter-dead-dies_n_4111710.html" target="_blank">Veteran character actor Lauter died of mesothelioma</a>, a rare form of cancer most commonly caused by asbestos exposure, on Oct. 16, 2013. He was 74.
Choreographer and dance instructor Patsy Swayze, the mother of late actor Patrick Swayze, died Sept. 16, 2013. She was 86. No cause of death was given.
Jackie Lomax, a singer-songwriter who worked with The Beatles and enjoyed a long solo career, died Sept. 15, 2013 following a brief illness. He was 69.
Lee Thompson Young
<a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/08/19/lee-thompson-young-dead_n_3780781.html?ref=topbar" target="_blank">"The Famous Jett Jackson" star was found dead</a> in his apartment by his landlord in Los Angeles on Aug. 19, 2013. Young's rep confirmed that he took his own life. He was 29.
Lisa Robin Kelly
<a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/08/15/lisa-robin-kelly-dead_n_3763163.html" target="_blank">The former "That '70s Show" actress died</a> at the age of 43 on Aug. 14, 2013. According to TMZ, Kelly died in her sleep at a rehab facility in California.
<a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/08/14/gia-allemand-dead_n_3756940.html?utm_hp_ref=mostpopular" target="_blank">"The Bachelor" star died from an apparent suicide</a> on Aug. 14, 2013. She was 29.
<a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/08/02/michael-ansara-dead-dies_n_3697009.html" target="_blank">The "Star Trek" actor died</a> on July 31, 2013 at the age of 91.
Radio personality <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/07/28/kidd-kraddick-dead_n_3665417.html" target="_blank">David "Kidd" Kraddick died July 27, 2013</a> at age 53.
Cale, the singer-songwriter and producer known as the main architect of the Tulsa Sound, <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/07/27/jj-cale-dead-dies_n_3664256.html" target="_blank">died on July 26, 2013</a>. His manager, Mike Kappus, said he died of a heart attack. He was 74.
<a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/07/22/dennis-farina-dead_n_3635587.html" target="_blank">The "Law & Order" star died on July 22, 2013 at the age of 69</a> after suffering a blood clot in his lung.
Cory Allan Michael Monteith, a Canadian actor best known for playing Finn Hudson on the hit Fox TV show "Glee," was found dead on July 13, 2013 in a Vancouver hotel room. He was 31.
James Gandolfini, best known for his role on "The Sopranos," died in Italy on June 19, 2013 after suffering from a heart attack.
The high-pitched country singer who sold millions of records through ever-present TV ads in the 1980s and 1990s and whose song saved the world in the film comedy "Mars Attacks!," died June 19, 2013 at a Florida hospital. He was 90.
Jeanne Cooper, who played Katherine Chancellor on the daytime soap opera "The Young and the Restless," <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/05/08/jeanne-cooper-dead-dies_n_3239218.html" target="_blank">died on May 8, 2013</a>. She was 84.
Hanneman, a founding member of Slayer, died May 1, 2013 of liver failure. He was 49.
Chris Kelly, one-half of the 1990s rap duo Kris Kross, died May 1, 2013 of an apparent drug overdose. He was 34.
The country music legend died at 81 on April 26, 2013 at Vanderbilt University Medical Center in Nashville, Tennessee. He was hospitalized April 18 with fever and irregular blood pressure.
The folk singer and guitarist, who was the first performer at Woodstock, died on April 22, 2013 at age 72. He died of a heart attack in New Jersey, his family said in a statement.
The raunchy lead singer of the Australian rock band Divinyls whose hit "I Touch Myself" brought her international fame in the early 1990s, died at her home in New York City on April 21, 2013. She was 53 years old. "Christine Joy Amphlett succumbed to the effects of breast cancer and multiple sclerosis, diseases she vigorously fought with exceptional bravery and dignity," her musician husband Charley Drayton said in a statement.
Character actor Richard LeParmentier, who as a young Death Star commander learned the hard way that Darth Vader brooks no disrespect, died April 16, 2013. He was 66.
The comedic film and TV actor died on April 11, 2013 at the age of 87. He passed away of natural causes, surrounded by friends and family.
Former child star Annette Funicello died on April 8, 2013 at the age of 70. The actress, who is best remembered for her time as a Mouseketeer on "The Mickey Mouse Club" from 1955 to 1957, died from complications related to multiple sclerosis, which she was diagnosed with more than 20 years ago.
Legendary film critic Roger Ebert died April 4, 2013, at the age of 70. Two days prior, Ebert revealed on his blog that his cancer had returned and that he would be reducing his reviewing duties at the Chicago Sun-Times.
The 21-year-old "Buckwild" star was found dead in a truck in Sissonville, W. Va., along with two other bodies, on April 1, 2013. It was later said Gandee had died of carbon monoxide poisoning while “mudding," or off-roading through mud, in his 1984 Ford Bronco.
A masterful Grammy Award-winning engineer, arranger and producer whose platinum touch included recordings with Ray Charles, Billy Joel and Paul Simon, Ramone died March 30, 2013 of complications stemming from heart surgery. He was 79.
One of the great British stage actors of his generation, also known for playing grumpy Uncle Vernon in the fantastical "Harry Potter" movies. Griffiths died March 28, 2013, from complications following heart surgery. He was 65.
Former Iron Maiden drummer Clive Burr has died March 12, 2013. He was 56. Burr passed away in his sleep and had suffered poor heath for years after being diagnosed with multiple sclerosis.
A country singer-songwriter and original member of the Louisiana Hayride, King was best known for the 1962 hit "Wolverton Mountain." He died on March 7, 2013, at 90 years of age.
Peter Banks, the original guitarist for the British band Yes, died on March 7, 2013, at the age of 65. A post on his official website stated that Banks died from heart failure and was found in his London home after he didn't show up to a recording session. <br> L-R: Peter Banks, Tony Kaye, Chris Squire, Bill Bruford, Jon Anderson - posed, group shot (Photo by Gilles Petard/Redferns)
The British rock guitarist and founder of the band "Ten Years After," who burst to stardom with a memorable Woodstock performance, died March 6, 2013. He was 68. A statement posted on Lee's official website said he died unexpectedly from complications following a routine surgical procedure. Lee's manager, Ron Rainey, said the guitarist died in Spain.
Bonnie Franklin, the pert, redheaded actress who won fame as a divorced mom on the long-running sitcom "One Day at a Time," has died March 1, 2013 due to complications from pancreatic cancer. She was 69.
DJ Ajax (Adrian Thomas)
Australian producer Adrian Thomas, better known as DJ Ajax, died on the day of his 42nd birthday, Feb. 28, 2013. The Sydney Morning Herald reported DJ Ajax died after he ran out onto a Melbourne road and was hit by an oncoming truck.
Former Motown vocalist Richard Street (top R), a member of the Temptations for 25 years, died on Feb. 27, 2013 at a hospital in Las Vegas after a short illness. He was 70.
Dale Robertson, an Oklahoma native who became a star of television and movie Westerns during the genre's heyday, died Feb. 26, 2013 Scripps Memorial Hospital in La Jolla, Calif., following a brief illness. He was 89.
Former Allman Brothers Band guitarist Dan Toler has died on Feb. 25, 2013, at the age of 65. He passed away in his sleep after a two-year battle with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, better known as ALS or Lou Gehrig's disease.
Myers, the actor most known for playing Mr. Vernon Gaines on the NBC sitcom "A Different World," died on Feb. 19, 2013 at Charleston Medical Center in West Virginia after undergoing a heart-related emergency and falling into a coma. He was 76.
Harris (far right), a one-time member of legendary Motown group The Temptations, died on Feb. 18, 2013. According to the Baltimore Sun, Harris (born Otis Robert Harris, Jr.) lost his 14-year-long battle to prostate cancer after spending the last three months in the hospital. He was 62. Also in the photo: Richard Street, Melvin Franklin, Otis Williams and Dennis Edwards in 1972.
The country singer was found dead in her Heber Springs, Ark., home on Feb. 17, 2013. The Cleburne County sheriff said in a statement that preliminary autopsy results from Arkansas' state crime lab show McCready's death was a suicide from a single gunshot wound to the head.
Bass player Rick Huxley, one of the founding members of the Dave Clark Five, died on Feb. 11, 2013, at the age of 72. Though the band broke up in 1970, they were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2008.
John Kerr, the stage and film actor whose credits include the movie "South Pacific," the thriller "The Pit and the Pendulum" and a Tony Award-winning turn in "Tea and Sympathy," died on Feb. 9, 2013, at the age of 81. He passed away due to heart failure at Huntington Hospital in Pasadena, Calif.
Mark Balelo, an auction house owner featured on the A&E reality TV show "Storage Wars," was found dead on Feb. 11, 2013. He was 40. His death has been declared a <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/02/13/mark-balelo-suicide_n_2674485.html">suicide</a>.