Madonna, Cher, Elvis Presley – there are some names that just scream “pop star.” Despite their peculiarity (and let’s admit that Madonna Ciccone, Cherilyn Sarkisian LaPierre Bono, and Elvis Presley are all unusual), there’s something iconic about each of these names that makes them easy to envision in the bright lights of Tinseltown or Las Vegas.
Despite her strong Irish roots, Dolores O’Riordan had no such luck in the nominative determinism department. However, on the strength of her distinctive brogue vocal stylings, songwriting talent, and a captivating stage presence, the barefoot chanteuse in the early 1990’s helped make The Cranberries the most successful Irish rock band since U2.
Unlike U2’s Bono – born Paul David Hewson – Dolores Mary Eileen O’Riordan didn’t need any name changes, and wore her Irish heritage as proudly as her characteristic shortly-cropped hair.
If I were born in the Ballybricken region of Limerick, Ireland, and attended Coláiste Cnoc na Labhras – one of the top five or ten public schools in Ireland – I’d embrace that heritage as well.
It was a winning formula: The Cranberries’ first album was a worldwide success and sold five million copies in the U.S. alone; subsequent albums would sell another 10 million copies in the U.S. The band’s albums have reached #1 in eleven different countries, and have earned 42 Platinum certifications worldwide.
In 2006, Dolores O’Riordan was listed as one of the ten richest women in Ireland, and has been a personal acquaintance of the last two Popes. In 2010, after a six-year hiatus, The Cranberries’ original lineup – Dolores O’Riordan, Mike and Noel Hogan, and the awesomely-named Fergal Lawler – reunited for a worldwide tour, and released their sixth album Roses, earlier this year.
Plus, their song Linger was spoofed on an episode of NBC’s Community, which you know we appreciate here at the Blog of Funny Names. *Swoon*
Finally, I have to congratulate my Esteemed ColleagueTM Arto, whose Orland Kurtenbach and the Legend of Flin Flon, Manitoba post from Tuesday has been selected to become a WordPress Freshly Pressed featured article in the coming days. Today, WordPress; tomorrow, the world!