Here are nine immortals that managed to return from the great beyond to rock out once more.
Josh Homme – The Queens Of The Stone Age frontman diced with death in 2010 – but it wasn’t even his fault. During a low-risk knee operation, he suffered complications from the anesthesias used to put him under, resulting in him actually dying on the operating table for several minutes. “I woke up and there was a doctor going, ‘Shit, we lost you'” Homme later told NME. “I couldn’t get up for four months. When I did, I hadn’t got a clue what was going on.”
Ozzy Osbourne – It’d be surprising if Ozzy wasn’t on this list, to be honest. Ozzy has been famously reckless over the years, whether it be his intake of drugs or biting the head off bats, but it was actually a quad biking accident in 2003 that almost killed him. After hitting a pothole on his estate while riding his quad bike, Ozzy lost control of the vehicle and crashed, suffering back and head injuries when the bike fell on top of him. His wife Sharon later reported that he had no pulse and stopped breathing for “a minute and a half”.
Slash – Though Slash now treats the incident merely as a great anecdote, the Guns N’ Roses guitarist was declared clinically dead for eight minutes after an overdose of heroin. “These drug dealers came to my hotel room at 5am. They had everything and I took all of it. I started down the hallway and I ran into a maid, and I asked where the elevator was and then bam! I collapsed”, he said to the Guardian in 2005. 11 years later Tom Zutaut (who signed the band in the ’80s) revealed that bandmate Axl Rose “believes that the soul of Saul Hudson [Slash] left his body when he OD’d” and that it was a contributing factor to the band’s demise.
Dave Gahan – In 1996, Depeche Mode singer Dave Gahan also overdosed on heroin, and as a result his heart stopped beating for a couple of minutes. “These seconds seemed like hours to me. And suddenly, there was a complete, frightening darkness around me. As if someone had turned off the light,” he said. When he awoke in hospital, he was arrested for drugs possession and sentenced to 10 years in prison – though they helped him rehabilitate over the coming years instead of incarceration. “For the first time in my life, it became clear to me that I am not immortal.”
Nikki Sixx – During their heyday in ’80s, the Motley Crue bassist’s drug habits nearly got the better of him, when he too overdosed on heroin in 1987. His heart stopped beating for two minutes, before a paramedic on the scene managed to get it beating again with two shots of adrenalin to the chest. He went into rehab soon after and the incident inspired the song ‘Kickstart My Heart’ from 1989 album ‘Dr. Feelgood’.
Phil Anselmo – Following a show in 1996, the Pantera frontman overdosed on heroin. Though his heart stopped for several minutes, the controversial singer was revived by paramedics who arrived on the scene. “I, Philip H. Anselmo … injected a lethal dose of heroin into my arm, and died for four to five minutes” a statement read to the press four days after the incident revealed.
Al Jourgensen – Jourgensen, frontman of American metal band Ministry, claims that he’s bounced back from being declared dead not just once, but three times – all from drug overdoses. In 2013, Jourgensen revealed that he is currently off drugs, reducing his intake of drink and drugs to beer, wine and the occasional toke of marijuana.
Don Powell – In 1974, Slade drummer Don Powell was involved in a serious car accident that left him in a six-day coma. In the immediate aftermath his heart stopped beating twice and the collision also killed his passenger in the car that day. Powell now has little memory of the incident and still suffers long-term memory loss as a result.
Aaron Lazar – No rockstar has cheated death quite like Lazar. When the frontman of The Giraffes was behind the wheel of a car in 2005, he suffered a sudden syndrome called cardiac death, which results in all functions of the heart failing immediately. He crashed the car as a result but survived, making him one of only five percent of those affected by the syndrome to live. “You know when you take your first hit off a cigarette? That nicotine sick you get, that nauseous, swimmy, gross feeling? It was like that – only with a tunnel vision that kept going and going and going”, Lazar said years after the event.