Sinéad O’Connor sent texts ‘laden with despair’ to Bob Geldof weeks before death

Sinéad O’connor Sent Texts ‘Laden With Despair’ To Bob Geldof Weeks Before Death
Sinead O’Connor, © PA Archive/PA Images
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By Ellie Iorizzo, PA Senior Entertainment Reporter

Bob Geldof told a festival crowd that late singer Sinéad O’Connor had sent him text messages weeks before her death which were “laden with desperation, despair and sorrow”.

The Boomtown Rats frontman dedicated the band’s performance at Cavan Calling in Ireland to O’Connor, who died at her home in south-east London last week at the age of 56.


Geldof, 71, who grew up with her family and lived “down the road” from her, told the crowd: “Many, many times Sinéad was full of a terrible loneliness and a terrible despair.

“She was a very good friend of mine. We are talking right up to a couple of weeks ago.

“Some of the texts were laden with desperation and despair and sorrow and some were ecstatically happy. And she was like that.”


O’Connor, who was propelled to international stardom in 1990 with her version of the hit Nothing Compares 2 U, was also known for taking fierce stances on social and political issues such as the child abuse scandal in the Catholic Church.

The Grammy Award-winning singer sparked controversy and made headlines in 1992 when she tore up a photo of Pope John Paul II on US TV show Saturday Night Live in protest, sparking a ferocious backlash.

Geldof said: “She tore up the picture of the Pope because she saw me tearing up a picture of John Travolta on Top Of The Pops. It was a little more extreme than tearing up f****** disco – tearing up the Vatican is a whole other thing but more correct actually, I should’ve done it.”


Ahead of the Irish concert, Geldof told Aine Duffy for Irish Web TV, that the band were “all very sad” following O’Connor’s death and had decided to play a number of their oldest tracks for the crowd as she was a “big Rats fan” and had gone to many of their gigs as a young girl.

He said: “Sinéad lived down the road from me and Gary, the guitar player in the band who died about six or seven months ago, we are quite literally down the road.

Sir Bob Geldof
Sir Bob Geldof said Sinéad O’Connor was ‘a very good friend’ (Damien Eagers/PA)

“So we’ve known that girl most of her life, really. She was a big Rats fan… so, to be honest with you, that’s why we’re doing very early stuff and we dedicate this gig to her, it’s the only thing we can do as musicians.

“We were friends all the way through. She was signed to the same little record label we were signed to, by the same guy, had the same manager and stuff like that so there’s a big connection there.”

Geldof confirmed the performance at Cavan Calling was “definitely for Sinéad”.

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