Irish singer Sinead O’Connor has died, reportedly in the Herne Hill area, aged just 56.
The Dublin-born musician and songwriter, who achieved huge success after her chart-topping 1990 single ‘Nothing Compares 2 U’, had recently moved back to London.
The iconic star, remembered for her voice that “cracked stone” and rebellious antics, had long struggled with mental health, especially after her seventeen-year-old son Shane died eighteen months ago having left hospital while on suicide watch.
National media have reported a Met Police statement saying officers were called to a residential address in the SE24 area at 11.18am yesterday (Wednesday, July 26) and found a woman unresponsive.
“A 56-year-old woman was pronounced dead at the scene. Next of kin have been notified. The death is not being treated as suspicious. A file will be prepared for the Coroner,” it added.
“It is with great sadness that we announce the passing of our beloved Sinéad,” a statement from her family said.
“Her family and friends are devastated and have requested privacy at this very difficult time.”
Fans have been left stunned by the tragic news. Less than three weeks ago, O’Connor posted a video to Twitter sharing her move-in to her new home.
She said how she’d bought a new Martin Johnny Cash guitar and was looking forward to writing new songs on it.
O’Connor, who is survived by three children, achieved huge success after 1990 and went on to produce ten studio albums.
In tributes, English musician Alison Moyet said she had a voice that “cracked stone”. Writer Caitlin Moran said Ms O’Connor was “THE greatest voice of her generation, no contest”.
Her career was strewn with high-profile, controversial incidents, including when she ripped up a photo of Pope John Paul II on Saturday Night Live in 1992.
It led Frank Sinatra to say he wanted to “kick her ass”.
She had a complex and strained relationship with religion. Aged fourteen, she was placed in one of the infamous Magdalene Laundries for girls considered ‘promiscuous’.
In 2018 she converted to Islam and changed her name to Shuhada.
Throughout her life, O’Connor was an outspoken advocate for HIV and AIDS charity HIV Ireland.