Quindon Tarver, known for 'American Idol' and 'Romeo + Juliet,' dead at 38 after car accident

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Quindon Tarver, best known for singing in Baz Luhrmann’s 1996 “Romeo + Juliet” and Seasons 2 and 7 of “American Idol” is dead at age 38 after a car accident in Texas. 

The singer’s uncle, Willie Tarver, confirmed news of his death to The Daily Beast saying he was in an accident on a Texas highway last Thursday.  

“He had an accident—all we know is he had a wreck, crashed into a wall somewhere on George Bush [Turnpike],” he told the outlet. “That’s all the information I have.”

Quindon’s other uncle, Kevin, told The Dallas Morning News that the tragedy comes as the 38-year-old was focusing his efforts on a musical comeback. 

“He had been through so much,” said Kevin. “But his focus was on his music. He was getting ready to make his comeback. He had been in the studio working on a project that was supposed to be released this year.”

Singer Quindon Tarver died in a car accident at age 38.
(Raymond Boyd/Getty Images)

Born in 1982, Quindon reportedly began singing in his church choir at age 4 before he was tapped to appear in Madonna’s “Like a Prayer.” By age 12, he’d signed with Virgin Records and was set to record his self-titled debut album. Before he finished, he was asked to appear in the modern adaptation of Shakespeare’s play “Romeo + Juliet.” 

Fans may remember Quindon as a choir member singing Prince’s “When Doves Cry” and Rozalla’s “Everybody’s Free” in the film.  The tracks also appeared on the double platinum soundtrack to the movie, according to the Dallas Morning News.

Luhrmann took to Instagram to pay tribute to the late singer with an audition tape of him singing.

“A beautiful soul has passed, my thoughts are with Quindon Tarver’s family and loved ones,” the director captioned the video.

The same year his album and the soundtrack came out, his star continued to rise with the release of his album and the hit single “It’s You That’s On My Mind,” which the outlet reports sent him on tour with singers Brandy and Monica. However, despite a quick rise as a youth in the music scene, he was back home in Texas by age 14.  

In a 2017 interview with an Australian outlet, he claimed his career stalled after he spoke out about being molested by someone in the music industry. He mentioned that he started to have struggles with drug and alcohol addiction after his career stalled. However, by 2017, he had just come out of rehab and was dedicated to getting back to his music. 


“It was a relief,” Quindon said at the time. “I was free. Those burdens were all lifted. It was the most liberating, amazing feeling that I had ever felt in my life. I forgave the people that hurt me, the people that did cruel things to me, I forgave them and I let it go, so that I could heal. That was the only way I could heal,” he said at the time. “I walked out of there a free man and I have not looked back. I’m back into my music and I think my passion is stronger than ever.”


In October 2020 he released his latest track, “Stand Our Ground,” which Kevin told The Daily Beast was a tribute to his son, Quindon’s cousin, who died in January due to “police brutality.”

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