Remembering Dolores O’Riordan: A ridiculous wisdom way beyond her years

WHETHER it be a pope, a president or a princess, or a rock star she looked up to, Dolores O’Riordan was able to take it all in her stride and talk to them all.
Stuart Clark, Deputy Editor of Hot Press Magazine curated the first career-spanning book on The Cranberries published in December called Why Can’t We? – The Story of The Cranberries.
In the second part of this interview with Limerick Post, Stuart talks about the people who contributed to the book such as Michael Stipe, Simon LeBon and Kevin Barry.
Eileen O’Riordan
“Eileen, I have to say, is a force of nature. What a wonderful woman. She’s lost her daughter but her positivity and her way of looking at it is amazing.
“She shared the best experience of her life, which was going to see the pope with Dolores.
“They were both very religious, Dolores was deeply spiritual and going to see the pope with her mum and vice versa, that was beautiful to her.”
Eileen toured quite a bit with Dolores and looked after the kids when they were very young. She was there when Dolores was introduced to Princess Diana by Simon Le Bon.
They (Diana and Dolores) were giggling away getting on famously. Simon is not sure what was being said.
“He knows that Dolores invited Diana down to the ladies toilet for a natter!
Diana said, “”I can’t, I have to think of safety and security.”
Ole Koretsky
“A lovely guy, real gentleman, and still patently grieving after the loss of his girlfriend.”
He talked about the fun they had together. The fact they’re in New York which is no respecter of celebrity.
“She was able to go down to the 7-11 for groceries and enjoy going for a breakfast bagel.
Commuting between there and Limerick, he got on famously with her family. She helped reintroduce him to his father in the Ukraine.”
Kevin Barry
Multi-award winning Limerick author Kevin Barry, spent many years writing for Irish Examiner, Limerick Tribune and of course The Limerick Post Newspaper, providing the court reports to this paper which no doubt inspired some of the colourful characters that populated his 2011 award-winning City of Bohane.
Kevin provides a vivid picture of Limerick in the late 1980s where The Cranberries first formed. Ho conjures up the imagery of weekly trips to Buddies Bar in Foxes Bow to drink Newcastle Brown Ale and score a five spot and dancing to The Smiths all night in Costelloes. He perfectly describes those days, we all remember, spent in dank bedsits in the city with his conclusion that you weren’t there unless you, “remember trying to light a fag off a Calor Kosangas Superser heater at five in the morning and singeing your eyebrows.”

Available in O’Mahony’s Bookstore, O’Connell Street and online from

Stuart was really thrilled when Kevin Barry agreed to contribute something to the book.
“Kevin gathered his thoughts and we had a really fun chat and as you may have seen, we managed to even track down a photo of Buddies Bar in the laneway. You weren’t very welcome down there with the camera back in the day, for obvious reasons!”
Michael Stipe
It’s really not easy getting hold of big rock stars when they’re not in promo mode. A chance email sent to Athens, Georgia got an immediate answer confirming that Michael wanted to talk about Dolores for the book.
Michael stated that they took The Cranberries out on tour so he could watch them play every night.
Michal told Stuart that, yes, she was a country girl from Ireland. But he said she had a ridiculous wisdom way beyond her years and he said she had a really interesting way of looking at the world. She had a lot of composure for a young girl.
Dolores had an amazing wardrobe of costumes on tour. Stipe is apparently quite small. They’re about the same size. Michael took a shine to her PVC dress with rubber spikes. He was trying it on as a hat then as a skirt. He said there is a photograph of this and he is trying to find it

President Michael D. Higgins
Legendary Limerick politician, Jim Kenney was an early adopter of The Cranberries and was a big fan since the 1990’s. “And indeed, we found out that it was Jim Kemmy raving to his Labour Party colleague, Michael D. Higgins, that got the president into The Cranberries.”
Michael D is a big Cranberries fan and he puts it all down to Jim Kemmy giving him the hard sell on the band.
Simon Le Bon
Simon said Dolores was a remarkable person. He was like the older brother to her, and he said she was like an older sister when he had some personal problems.
He didn’t elaborate. He said it was Dolores that gave him a kick up the backside and that the arm around the shoulder got him through it.
WHY CAN’T WE? – The Story Of The Cranberries is available in O’Mahony’s Bookstore, O’Connell Street, Limerick. It is also available online from

MusicLimerick – New Music Favourites is a Spotify playlist of some of the fine music being produced by Limerick artists over the last 12 months.

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