Dolores O’Riordan, lead singer of beloved Irish rock band The Cranberries, died Monday. She was 46.
According to a statement released by the band, O’Riordan died suddenly in London where she has been on a short recording session. No further details were released, and the cause of death has not been made public. “Family members are devastated to hear the breaking news and have requested privacy at this very difficult time.”
“We are devastated on the passing of our friend Dolores,” The Cranberries band members Fergal Lawler, Noel and Mike Hogan posted in a joint statement. “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”.
The Cranberries rose to prominence in the 1990s with “Everybody Else Is Doing It, So Why Can’t We?,” their debut studio album written entirely by O’Riordan and guitarist Noel Hogan. The album includes two of their biggest hits “Dreams” and “Linger,” the latter peaking at no.8 in the United States Billboard Hot 100.
Since then, the band achieved chart success throughout their career with four top 20 albums and eight top 20 singles including rock classics “Zombie,” “Ode to My Family,” and “Salvation.” Overall, The Cranberries has sold over 40 million records worldwide.
But it was O’Riordan’s uniquely recognizable voice that defined the sound of the band, a tone that is both strong and raw, delicate and breathy layered with yodels and Celtic inflections.
The band is usually associated with alternative rock given the era of their arrival in the music scene while their music bridged elements of post-punk, folk, indie pop, and pop rock.
The Cranberries broke up in 2002 after O’Riordan left the band but reunited several years later. They were set to embark on a European and North American tour but was cut short as O’Riordan had health issues.
O’Riordan was born Sept 6, 1971, and grew up in the Ballybricken, a town in County Limerick, Ireland. O’Riordan released her first solo album, “Are You Listening?” in 2007 which was followed by “No Baggage” in 2009. She is survived by her three children, son Taylor and daughters Molly and Dakota.