Sadly, Brad had just married his wife Troy 7 days before he was found dead of a heroin overdose in his hotel room.
Here's a tribute to him from a fan that's posted on the band's official website:
May 25, 1996 is a day all beloved and true Sublime fans will never forget. The lead vocalist/guitarist Bradley Nowell was found dead by his fellow bandmate Bud Gaugh at 11:30 AM in a San Fransisco hotel room due to a heroin overdose. He died at 28 leaving behind a band, a wife, a son, and one of the most endearing albums of 1996: Sublime. The album is in a category of its own mediating reggae, folk, and punk rock. During recording of the self-titled album it was one of the hardest times for the band. Brad, having his ups and downs with heroin and battling his addiction created alot of stress for everyone. However, this was how Brad felt it was easiest to express himself; on heroin.The band broke up shortly after his death.
Brad's music was truly unique. It was filled with passion and when he sang he would sin his heart out and went for it all the way. He would sit on street corners and just play his guitar and sing. His art and his creativity can only be described as a gift.
Brad was one of those great people that are hard to come by. Kurt Cobain had that same inspiring influence on the world but he did not have the simplicity that Brad had. Brad has so much honesty in his voice. For example in the song "Pool Shark" the very last lyrics of the song are "One day im gonna lose a war." He performed this song with so much emotion that the crowd could feel the pain in his heart as he sang the words. The words of his heart have changed peoples' lives. They have made a few of this generation not want to face the consequenses Brad faced the last few years of his life.
Brad was an inspiration to many of his fans and to many musicians of today. His music, his life, and most of all his passion will never be forgotten.