Dolores O’Riordan, beloved singer of ’90s rock band the Cranberries, died unexpectedly in London. The frontwoman was 46 years old.
O’Riordan was born in Ireland as the youngest of seven. She auditioned to become the singer of a Smiths-inspired band, then known as The Cranberry Saw Us, originally formed by brothers Noel and Mike Hogan. Her first version of “Linger” got her the spot and the band recorded a three-track EP titled “Nothing Left At All”. They completed another demo tape which garnered the attention of the UK music scene; major British record labels fought over the group until they settled with Island Records. The Cranberries released five studio albums prior to a four-year hiatus between 2004-2008. They reformed in 2009 and released “Roses”, then what turned out to be their final album “Something Else” in April last year.
O’Riordan’s Sudden Death
The Cranberries confirmed the lead singer’s death in a brief statement. According to the band, O’Riordan was in London for a short recording session. She was found dead on Monday, 9:05 AM London time, in her hotel room at the Hilton London. No further details were made available and the Metropolitan Police are treating the death as “unexplained”. A cause of death is still to be determined, but it’s noted that the Cranberries were forced to cancel tour dates last year due to O’Riordan’s back problem. Prior to her passing, she also revealed that she’d been battling with depression and mental health problems for a majority of her career.
Messages of love and sadness circulated the internet from dear friends and fans of the Irish songbird. Remaining Cranberries members Noel Hogan, Mike Hogan, and Fergal Lawler released a separate statement on the band’s Twitter.
We are devastated on the passing of our friend Dolores. She was an extraordinary talent and we feel very privileged to have been part of her life from 1989 when we started the Cranberries. The world has lost a true artist today.
Noel, Mike and Fergal
— The Cranberries (@The_Cranberries) January 15, 2018
“Late Late Show” James Corden shared his meeting with O’Riordan when he was 15 and how she was so kind to him.
I once met Delores O’Riordan when I was 15. She was kind and lovely, I got her autograph on my train ticket and it made my day. She had the most amazing voice and presence. So sorry to hear that she’s passed away today x
— James Corden (@JKCorden) January 15, 2018
Meanwhile, indie band Foster the People shared their praise to singer, calling her a “true pioneer”.
Shocked and heartbroken over Dolores O’Riordan’s death. The Cranberries were pinnacle in showing me that it was possible to fully embrace masculine and feminine energy in one cohesive sound. She was a true pioneer 💔
— Foster The People (@fosterthepeople) January 15, 2018
“Oh my life is changing everyday in every possible way. And oh my dreams—it’s never quite as it seems.” Rest in peace, Dolores O’Riordan. You were taken from this world too soon.
Featured image from Cranberries World