Irish singer Sinead O'Connor.

Irish singer Sinéad O’Connor dies aged 56

She was 23 years old, with big green eyes and shaved hair that became her trademark. Just like her devastating voice and her emotional ups and downs. The tears that Sinéad O’Connor (1966-2023) let fall in the Saint-Cloud Park in Paris, where she shot the famous Nothing Compares 2 U video clip, were for her mother, who had died five years earlier in an accident. A mother who mistreated her. The singer’s loss and grief then transcended the song written by Prince and seeped into the retinas and brains of half the world. It was 1990. This Wednesday, with that memory intact and rekindled in loop by platforms like YouTube or Spotify, the farewell to the Irishwoman, who has died at 56, returned to give prominence to her.

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“Her family and friends are devastated and have asked for privacy at this very difficult time,” reads the statement released by those close to her. The causes of her death have not been revealed, although last year the artist expressed her desire to follow the path of one of her sons, Shane, who took his own life at the age of 17; she has three others. Born in Dublin, O’Connor did not have an easy life. She grew up in an environment of strong religious convictions. Catholic. And that haunted her all her life, so much so that in 1992 she decided to tear up a photo of Pope John Paul II live on NBC’s Saturday Night Live to denounce the hypocrisy of the Church.

It came as a shock to American society, which had welcomed her as a star two years earlier. The snapshot, taken in 1979 during a visit of the pontiff to Ireland, was on a wall of her mother’s house, a dressmaker who dressed her like a child, told her she should not have been born and beat her. The singer went through several reform schools and found in music an escape route in which to pour her intensity.

The controversial singer also boycotted the 1991 Grammy Awards -she refused the award for best alternative album she won that year-; she was ordained a priestess of a dissident Catholic order in 1999; she showed her sympathy for the IRA and Sinn Féin; she picked on former British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher and vehemently supported causes such as women’s rights and the fight against child abuse or racism.

Sinéad O’Connor released ten albums in total. The first one, The Lion And The Cobra (1987), product of the signing by a London label, already anticipated a more than interesting career for an unknown European voice. Then came the planetary success with I Do Not Want What I Haven’t Got (1990), in which he covered the song of the Minneapolis divo, which he had dedicated to his girlfriend, Susannah. He also collaborated in the soundtrack of the film In the Name of the Father, by Jim Sheridan.

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Gradually, the Irish singer disappeared from public life and received a diagnosis of bipolar. She converted to Islam in 2018 and decided to change her name to Shuhada’ Sadaqat. She attempted suicide twice and on several occasions spoke shamelessly to the media about her mental problems. One of his last public appearances took place earlier this year, when he picked up an award in person at the RTÉ Choice Music Awards, the Irish music awards. He dedicated it, without further ado, to all the refugees in his country. He received a standing ovation.

-Thailand News (TN)

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