Farewell, Dolores O’Riordan. But never goodbye.

Day 29. 81,251 words. Finished story #1!

Back on the 15th of January, I was gut-punched to learn that Dolores O’Riordan, of the Cranberries, had passed away.

I didn’t post then, partly because things were busy and I hadn’t had time to process it. Also, partly because I didn’t want to jump on the bandwagon – although I’m not really sure that was much of a consideration. Basically, I wanted to take time to put together a proper tribute.

Before The Corrs, my heart and soul sang The Cranberries.

I never bought an album. I listened to my siblings’ copy of No Need To Argue, over and over again. Whenever a Cranberries song came on the radio, I sang aloud if I was alone. When I wasn’t alone, I sang it aloud inside my ribcage and inside my skull.

I never really mentioned that they were one of my favourite bands, that O’Riordan was one of my favourite artists. For some of my friends and family it will probably come as something of a surprise. For others, absolutely no surprise whatsoever. I never talked about it, because there are things I’m happy sharing and good-humouredly making fun of, and then there are things I don’t talk about.

Ode To My Family will always be one of my all-time favourite songs, and brings me to embarrassing and hard-to-explain office tears as we speak.

Dolores O’Riordan was the voice of the 1990s. And then, without even knowing how much she would be missed, she was gone.

And oh, what a crush I had on her! As an adolescent and an early teen, oh my God, don’t even get me started. The power she had, the words and the spirit she projected … all that, and she was of course a petite, cross, witty, astonishing-voiced Irish girl. Talk about ticking all of teenage Hatboy’s boxes.

Well. Anyway.

So today, I’m just going to link up a bunch of O’Riordan’s classics for you to enjoy. And I shall be enjoying them myself, in as large a dose as I think I can bear.

Here’s a pretty one to end on (my favourite Fleetwood Mac song, and one I used as my farewell song when I departed Lionbridge):

What a voice. What a talent. What a loss to the world – not just the world of music, but the world of human beings.

Goodbye, Dolores. And thank you.

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4 Responses to Farewell, Dolores O’Riordan. But never goodbye.

  1. JonathanBloom says:

    I Just Shot John Lennon hit me like a bolt of lightning when I first heard it. It wasn’t one of their best songs, but man oh man did it have everything that I grew to love about Dolores and the Cranberries. It was righteously angry, catchy, and informative all at once. It had a clear point of view and a voice that was undeniable. By the time I heard Zombie, it was clear that they’d have a place in my heart forever. I’m still sad that I never got to see them live in concert.

  2. Holy shit. I didn’t even hear about this. I was much the same as you, back in those times, although clearly I’ve not listened to her in some time or I would have known. Chris Carnell’s passing didn’t evade my notice, after all. I echo all your sentiments, here.

    And I’ll share one personal, brief anecdote. As I was obsessively listening to Zombie (And the whole album but that song, particularly), one asshole from my fraternity stopped by my room and said “meh, you know, U2 already did a way better song about that”. [1][2]
    [1] Sunday, Bloody Sunday
    [2] Just to say fuck you to that asshole

    • stchucky says:

      U2 are in my top ten Irish musical talents, and they’re grand for a singalong, but they don’t make the pantheon.

      I mean, props to Frat Asshole for political awareness and lyric recognition, but zero for sensitivity.

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