Irish singer Dolores O’Riordan, best known for fronting the Cranberries, has died, reports Pitchfork. She was 46 years old.
The BBC published a statement from her publicist. “The lead singer with the Irish band The Cranberries was in London for a short recording session. No further details are available at this time. Family members are devastated to hear the news and have requested privacy at this very difficult time.”
O’Riordan began her musical career in 1990 when she joined the Cranberries. Their first album, Everyone is Doing It, So Why Can’t We was released in 1993. The band went on to have several hits, including “Linger,” which was certified Gold in the United States, “Dreams,” and “Zombie.” She was beloved for her distinctive voice, integrating her thick Irish accent and traditional yodeling into her diction. As a style icon, she wore her hair in a pixie cut or buzzed entirely, and exemplified the baggy style of the '90s alternative scene.
The Cranberries disbanded in 2003, after releasing five albums together. In the meanwhile, O’Riordan pursued a variety of solo projects, including a cover of “Ave Maria” for the soundtrack to the movie The Passion of the Christ. The band reunited in 2009 and later recorded more music. Their sixth record, Roses, was released in 2009. The Cranberries toured throughout Europe in 2016 and 2017, though several shows were canceled due to O’Riordan’s back pain.
The President of Ireland, Michael Higgins, wrote a tribute statement to the late singer. “It is with great sadness that I have learned of the death of Dolores O’Riordan, musician, singer and songwriter. Dolores O’Riordan and The Cranberries had an immense influence on rock and pop music in Ireland and internationally...To all those who follow and support Irish music, Irish musicians and the performing arts her death will be a big loss.”