Trevor Strnad, Black Dahlia Murder Singer, Dies at 41

by Taylor Cunningham
(Photo by Kevin Nixon/Metal Hammer Magazine/Future via Getty Images/Team Rock via Getty Images)

Lead vocalist of band The Black Dahlia Murder Trevor Strnad has died at the age of 41.

The remaining members of the black metal band posted the news on Instagram yesterday (May 11). And while they didn’t note a cause of death, they did include the contact information for the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline.

“It is with deep sadness that we announce the passing of Trevor Scott Strnad. “Beloved son, brother, and Shepard of good times, he was loved by all that met him. A walking encyclopedia of all things music,” they wrote alongside a blackout photo. “He was a hugger, a writer, and truly one of the world’s greatest entertainers. His lyrics provided the world with stories and spells and horror and whimsy. It was his life to be your show.”

Trevor Strand Was Open About His Battle With Mental Illness

The singer had been open about his struggle with mental health in recent years. In 2021, he spoke with Metal Injection and admitted that his musician lifestyle took a toll on his mind. According to him, traveling and performing meant that he was constantly drinking and putting on a persona for fans. And it was more than he could handle.

“It’s accumulated in some self-doubt, in more anxiety for me as the band has gotten bigger and bigger. And there’s more eyes and more pressure,” he said.

But Trevor Strnad had been working through his issues. And he told the outlet that opening up about his anxiety helped him cope. Strnad noted that he wanted his “40s to be awesome.” And he also planned on keeping his band around for at least another 20 years. He also added that he was going to “segue into being an older metalhead gracefully.”

The Singer Formed his Band as a Way of Coping

In fact, the reason he began his metal career was that the genre was a  “healthy” outlet “for negative energy.” As a teenager, Strnad obsessed over horror films and fantasy. And he said that he realized that heavy metal encompassed all those things. Once he saw the connection, “there was no stopping” him.

However, even as a successful musician, Strnad was still dealing with the sting of loneliness.

“I feel like the average person doesn’t see the merit in our culture and our world and doesn’t see how passionate we are, how it gives us so much life. It’s definitely been instrumental in shaping who I am,” he shared.

Trevor Strnad co-founded Black Dahlia Murder in 2000. The band released its first hit only one year later.

“This man changed my life and believed in me more than I do myself,” guitarist Brandon Ellis wrote. “I can not believe there will be no more laughs had, songs written together, or stages decimated with Trevor at the helm. I hope he knew how much he was loved the world over. Rest in peace Trevor.”