July 17, 2019 / 5:31 PM

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12 Famous Musicians and Their Ashes: Find Out The Final Resting Places of Kurt Cobain, Marvin Gaye, Freddie Mercury(?) and More

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The most recent controversy at the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in Cleveland has nothing to do with who gets voted in for once: It's because the institution is moving the cremated remains of disc jockey Alan Freed, the inventor of the term "rock 'n' roll," from its previous place of honor to make room for a new display featuring the fashions of Beyoncé

It's just another example where the keeping of ashes can only lead to bad things. Having the remains of loved ones in the house leads to experiences ranging from traumatic (theft) to horrifying (a la Keith Richards' father). If you want to visit the remains of the performers listed below, you'll have to settle for a very general view of a very general area. 

01) Maria Callas

Maria Callas is arguably the most well known female opera performer in the modern era and she isn't Italian, she's Greek. Her remains had troubles of their own, having been stolen from Père Lachaise Cemetery (the same institution that can't handle Jim Morrison's grave). She finally found peace spread in the Aegean Sea off the shore of her homeland. 

02) Kurt Cobain

The Nirvana frontman led a turbulent life but his remains are at peace, as far as we know. His ashes were spilt into three portions. One was scattered on the Wishkah River near Aberdeen, WA. Another was scattered at the Nangyal Buddhist Monastery in Tibet. The third was given to wife Courtney Love and we hope it's doing alright. 

03) John Denver

John Denver had long proclaimed a love for the outdoors through his music, especially in the form of his biggest hit "Rocky Mountain High." Accordingly, his ashes were distributed somewhere on the mountain range. 

04) Jerry Garcia

The Grateful Dead's frontman paid tribute to both his spiritual and physical sides with the distribution of his ashes. Half were spread under the Golden Gate Bridge into San Francisco Bay, the body of water bordering the band's (and his) hometown. The second half of his remains were committed to the Ganges River in India, although he didn't personally have an affiliation with the Hindu faith.

05) Marvin Gaye

One of the greatest voices of all time was scattered to the Pacific Ocean following his murder. Many don't realize that Gaye was living in Los Angeles at the time of his slaying, and that he was born in Washington D.C., so despite his affiliation with Motown Records, there's really no reason to justify spreading his ashes in Detroit. 

06) Woody Guthrie

Woody Guthrie was one of many folk musicians who ironically found themselves most relevant when working from the urban confines of New York City. He died of complications from Huntington's in his adopted home city and his ashes were spread off of Coney Island in Brooklyn. 

07) George Harrison

The Beatles guitarist had a very active affiliation with the Hindu religion, unlike a previous entry. He eventually settled into the Hare Krishna branch of the faith, after long having an interest in Indian spirituality and introducing music such as the sitar to his fellow Beatles. Appropriately, 100 percent of the performer's ashes were spread to the Ganges. 

08) Michael Hutchence

Hutchence, the vocalist for Australian rock group INXS, waited until the band returned to his hometown of Sydney during its world tour to commit suicide. As dark as it seems, it brought him closer to Sydney Harbor, where his ashes were eventually spread. 

09) Freddie Mercury

This is one of the most mysterious cases of celebrity remains in history. The Queen vocalist instructed his longtime partner Mary Austin where she should bury or distribute his ashes and that she should never reveal their whereabouts, a vow she has more than held up. Rumored locations include Kensal Green Cemetery where a small monument bears his birth name, Farrokh Bulsara, and Lake Geneva in Switzerland. Not even Mercury's parents know the true location. The vocalist feared his remains would be tampered with and his actions were most wise. We will probably never know. 

10) Gram Parsons

Gram Parsons made a deal with buddy Phil Kaufman that the when the first of the pair died, the other would burn the body in their beloved Joshua Tree National Park and have his ashes spread over Cap Rock. Parsons' stepfather organized a private funeral in Louisiana however, perhaps in hopes to prove the country icon a Louisiana citizen and thereby acquire a portion of the singer's grandfather's estate. Kaufman wouldn't let Parsons' wishes be ignored however so he organized a bold theft of the body from Los Angeles International airport and hastily burned the body with gasoline at Cap Rock while police were in pursuit. 

11) Tupac Shakur

The longstanding story regarding the final remains of the hip-hop icon was that members of his rap group the Outlawz took bits of his ash, rolled it with marijuana and smoked it. These events truly did happen, however the group's E.D.I. Mean later reported that they had discovered the ashes were not in fact Shakur's. 

12) Sid Vicious

The Sex Pistols bassist's mother is perhaps the worst in terms of childcare, both before and after death. Anne Beverly long provided her son with heroin, including the dose that resulted in his death (she is rumored to have admitted before her own death that she intentionally killed him to save Vicious from being found guilty of girlfriend Nancy Spungen's death). Although his ashes were reportedly scattered over Spungen's grave, a rumor persists that Beverly had accidentally spilled the jar at Heathrow Airport on the way over, causing much of his remains to be sucked into an air filtration vent. 

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