6 popular rock star graves around the world

6 popular rock star graves around the world

Grave tourism: Morbid pilgrimage sites are popular attractions for fans

"There ain't no grave can hold my body down," sang Johnny Cash.

"Here lies David St. Hubbins ... and why not?" answered Spinal Tap's David St. Hubbins (Michael McKean) when asked to write his own epitaph.

From almost the beginning of the Rock Era, death and the music's most famous figures have been engaged in a grisly dance, one that lingers with fans long after the last power chords have faded and the last cymbals have been crashed.

From Jim Morrison's heralded plot in Paris to Buddy Holly's humble headstone in Lubbock, Texas, the graves of rock stars have been the site of candlelight vigils, vandalism and defacement and impromptu concerts. 

At these pilgrimage sites, steady streams of fans get locked in staring contests or sit in catatonic silence, absorbing the posthumous vapors of deceased genius.  

1. Elvis Presley, Memphis, Tennessee

Thousands of Elvis Presley fans hold a candlelight vigil in honor of the King's death day at Graceland.
Even if he is six feet under at his former estate in Graceland, the original singer-songwriter heartthrob remains the King of Rock 'n' Roll, judging from the 600,000 people that visit his grave yearly. 

Located in Memphis, Graceland is a hugely popular tourist destination, and the grave visit is an important part of the tour.

The best date to visit is on August 16, the date of his passing. In 2012 more than 75,000 turned up for a candlelit vigil.

3764 Elvis Presley Blvd., Memphis, Tennessee; +1 901 322 3322; Monday-Friday 8:30 a.m.-5 p.m., Saturday-Sunday 9:30 a.m.-4 p.m.; US$32 per person; www.elvis.com

2. Jim Morrison, Paris 

Paying homage to Jim Morrison at his tomb at the Pere Lachaise cemetery in Paris.
Located in Paris' Père Lachaise cemetery, the grave of The Doors' singer and 27 Club member Jim Morrison has a somewhat seedy reputation.  

In addition to rumors that it may be haunted by Jim's ghost, the gravesite is known to have been the site of orgies, graffiti, drug parties, riots and theft (a bust of Morrison was stolen from the grave in 2000).  

Morrison died on July 3, 1971, but his music has gotten even more popular after his death.

16 Rue du Repos, Paris, France; +33 1 55 25 82 10; open Monday-Friday 8:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m., 2-5 p.m.; www.pere-lachaise.com 

3.  Jimi Hendrix, Renton, Washington 

Jimi Hendrix is buried in the town where he grew up.

With a four-star TripAdvisor rating, Jimi Hendrix's grave site is no mere stone marking -- it's one of the main tourist attractions in town. 

Located in the lovely Greenview Memorial Cemetery park in Renton, Washington, where Hendrix grew up, the memorial consists of a domed gazebo of marble and granite, engraved portraits (of Hendrix and a Fender Stratocaster) and quotes on plaques. 

Hendrix died in 1970; family members are also buried nearby. 

350 Monroe Ave. Northeast, Renton, Washington; +1 425 255 1511;  www.jimihendrixmemorial.com

4. Johnny Cash, Hendersonville, Tennessee 

Johnny Cash passed away at age 71.
The main reason to visit Hendersonville, Tennessee, is to pay respects to this titan of country, blues, folk and, yes, genre quibblers, rock 'n' roll. 

Although he dressed like he was going to a funeral for most of his life, Johnny Cash lived longer than most of the musicians on this list, passing away in 2003 at age 71.

Nearly ten years on, many of the fans who visit the grave still feel like mourners.  

353 Johnny Cash Parkway, Hendersonville, Tennessee; +1 615 824 3855

5. Buddy Holly, Lubbock, Texas 

Buddy Holly's real name was Charles Hardin Holley.

Buddy Holly passed away at the age of 22 in a plane crash more than half a century ago, but left an indelible mark on music.

His headstone in the City of Lubbock Cemetery in his hometown in Texas is somewhat like his legacy: quietly beloved and charming. 

At the fiftieth anniversary of Holly's death in 2009, fans paid homage with wreaths and guitar picks, some traveling halfway across the world to pay their respects.  

2011 East 31st St., Lubbock, Texas; +1 806 767 2270; cemetery.ci.lubbock.tx.us

6. Bon Scott, Freemantle, Australia  

Bon Scott's grave before the National Heritage plaque was stolen.

One of Australia's most popular graves, the site of original AC/DC vocalist Bon Scott's grave is also a National Heritage Site in Australia. 

It's only fitting.

The pilgrimage to the grave was the inspiration for a 2004 movie, and the grave itself gets thousands of visitors yearly

And that's saying quite a bit, because Scott's grave in Freemantle, Western Australia, isn't exactly on the way to anything. 

But for fans of the metal legend, it's enough that Scott's ashes are interred there. 

Well, for most fans, at least.

In 2006, perhaps to mark what would have been Scott's sixtieth birthday had he not died at age 33, someone nabbed the National Heritage Site plaque.  

Shabby behavior for a fan (we're assuming only a fan would care about the plaque in the first place), maybe. Then again, Scott was the bard who penned "Hell Ain't a Bad Place to Be."  

Scott died in 1980.

Freemantle Cemetary, Palmyra WA 6157, Australia; +61 1300 793 109 

More on CNN: Gallery: Life among the dead -- Manila's cemetery residents 

Violet Kim is a freelance writer for CNN Travel.

Find her online @pomography.

Read more about Violet Kim
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