China mourns loss of The Cranberries singer Dolores O'Riordan

By AFP - Global Times Source:AFP-Global Times Published: 2018/1/16 16:13:39

The Cranberries singer Dolores O’Riordan dies at 46

Dolores O'Riordan Photo: IC

Irish singer-songwriter Dolores O'Riordan, frontwoman of the multi-million selling rock band The Cranberries, died suddenly in London on Monday, aged 46, her publicist said.

"Irish and international singer Dolores O'Riordan has died suddenly in London today, family members are devastated," Lindsey Holmes said in a statement.

"The lead singer... was in London for a short recording session," she added. "No further details are available at this time."

A spokeswoman for London's Metropolitan police said officers are "dealing with a sudden death" after they were called to a hotel in Park Lane, in the center of the British capital, on Monday morning.

She did not confirm the identity of the person found.

"A woman in her mid-40s was pronounced dead at the scene," the spokeswoman said.

"At this early stage it is being treated as unexplained and enquiries continue," she added.

Irish Prime Minister Leo Varadkar was among the first to pay tribute, calling O'Riordan "the voice of a generation."

"For anyone who grew up in Ireland in the 1990s, the Cranberries were an iconic band, who captured all of the angst that came with your teenager years," he said in a statement.

"Her voice and her contribution to music will be remembered far beyond her native county for many years to come."

Family 'very devastated'

The Cranberries achieved international success in the 1990s with their debut album Everyone Else is Doing it, So Why Can't We?, which included the hit single "Linger."

Follow-up album "No Need to Argue" went to number one in Australia, France and Germany, and number 6 in the United States.

The album also gave rise to politically-charged single "Zombie," an angry response to the deadly Northern Ireland conflict, which hit No.1 across Europe. The band sold around 40 million records worldwide.

O'Riordan, from Friarstown in the Irish county of Limerick, will be buried in Ireland, according to the parish priest in her home town.

James Walton, priest at Ballybricken and Bohermore parish, told Britain's Press Association her family "is very devastated and upset."

"Her family are still waiting for more details to come from London about her death," he said.

"The plan is for her to be buried here at home. When that will be will depend on when her body is released."

'Immense influence on rock'

The Cranberries, formed in 1989 but went on a hiatus in 2003.

O'Riordon told AFP in a 2012 interview that "we were stuck in a rut. We just needed a break."

She headed to Canada, where she gave birth to her third child, but The Cranberries reformed in 2009 after getting together for a one-off show.

"At home I'm a house-keeper and a mum. The kids are, like, 'What's for dinner? Where are my clothes?' On tour it's, like: 'room-service,'" she said of the comeback.

She hit the headlines in 2014 after pleading guilty to assaulting three police officers and a flight attendant during a flight from New York to Ireland, and was diagnosed with bipolar disorder shortly afterwards.

The band was forced to cancel 14 concerts last year due to "medical reasons associated with a back problem" for O'Riordan.

The singer's last Facebook posting came shortly before Christmas.

"Hi All, Dolores here. Feeling good! I did my first bit of gigging in months at the weekend, performed a few songs at the Billboard annual staff holiday party in New York with the house band," it read.

"Really enjoyed it! Happy Christmas to all our fans!! Xo."

The band recently played in South America, with O'Riordan tweeting pictures of a show in Lima, Peru.

O'Riordan married Don Burton, former tour manager of Duran Duran, in 1994 but the couple, who had three children together, divorced in 2014.

British 1980s band Duran Duran posted on their official Twitter page that "we are crushed to hear the news about the passing of Dolores O'Riordan. Our thoughts go out to her family at this terrible time."

The Cranberries released their final album Something Else last year.

Response from China

Tributes poured out on Chinese social media as news of the singer's death spread across China.

O'Riordan's popularity in China, to some extent, rose considerably after well-known Chinese singer Faye Wong produced a cover of The Cranberries song "Dreams."

By Tuesday morning, "The Cranberries and Faye Wong" were the No.3 most-searched keywords on Chinese social media platform Sina Weibo.

The Cranberries had previously performed two concerts in Beijing and Shanghai in July 2011 and had planned to return for another tour in July of 2017, but this was canceled due to the singer's health issues.

Chinese musician Gao Xiaosong posted on Sina Weibo Tuesday morning that he had met with O'Riordan in September 2017, and that the singer told him she wanted to come to China for another tour in November of that year.

"That [meeting] has now become a farewell," he wrote. 

Wong was not the only Chinese musician to cover or be influenced by The Cranberries' music. Chinese mainland singer Li Yuchun covered "Zombie" in 2005, while Taiwan singers such as Mavis Fan and Winnie Hsin have talked about how the band's music influenced their own style. 

"I became a fan when I was in college during the early 2000s" Liu Xuanqi, a Chinese fan of the band in Beijing, told the Global Times.

"Her voice was very unique. It impressed you the moment you heard it. She poured her soul in their songs."

Newspaper headline: ‘Voice of a generation’

Posted in: MUSIC

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