Sinéad O'Connor merobek foto Paus Yohanes Paulus II di 'Saturday Night Live'

Sinéad O'Connor merobek foto Paus Yohanes Paulus II di 'Saturday Night Live'

Pada tanggal 3 Oktober 1992, musisi Irlandia Sinéad O'Connor mengejutkan penonton di 30 Rockefeller Plaza dan penonton di seluruh Amerika Serikat ketika dia merobek foto Paus Yohanes Paulus II selama pertunjukan di Live Sabtu Malam.

O'Connor mengejutkan SNL staf ketika dia memilih untuk menyanyikan versi acapella dari lagu Bob Marley "War" daripada lagu dari album terbarunya. Dia memberikan penampilan yang tajam dan intens dari lagu tersebut, yang mencela "rezim yang tercela dan tidak bahagia" yang menahan orang-orang dalam "perbudakan sub-manusia," mengubah beberapa lirik untuk secara khusus menyebutkan pelecehan anak. Sebagai penutup, O'Connor membawa foto paus ke kamera dan merobeknya berkeping-keping, sambil berkata, "Lawan musuh yang sebenarnya."

Penonton terdiam selama pertunjukan, tetapi NBC melaporkan mendengar dari hampir seribu penelepon yang marah selama beberapa hari ke depan — serta tujuh yang menelepon untuk mendukung O'Connor. Madonna, yang merupakan saingan musik O'Connor pada saat itu, mengkritik penampilannya, dengan mengatakan The Irish Times: "Saya pikir ada cara yang lebih baik untuk mempresentasikan idenya daripada merobek gambar yang sangat berarti bagi orang lain." Minggu depan SNL tamu, Joe Pesci, mencurahkan monolog pembukaannya untuk mengutuk O'Connor. Dua minggu kemudian, pada konser penghormatan Bob Dylan di Madison Square Garden, O'Connor diteriakkan dari panggung.

Terlepas dari kemarahannya, O'Connor tetap pada tindakannya dan mengklarifikasi bahwa dia ingin "menghadapi beberapa kebenaran yang sangat sulit," yaitu epidemi pelecehan anak di negara asalnya.

Perlu bertahun-tahun sebelum kebanyakan orang Amerika memahami tingkat pelecehan di Gereja Katolik Irlandia dan lembaga-lembaga terkait, tetapi topiknya terlalu pribadi bagi O'Connor. Sebagai seorang remaja, penyanyi itu telah menghabiskan 18 bulan di rumah sakit jiwa Magdalena (juga dikenal sebagai binatu Magdalena), sebuah institusi yang secara nominal dimaksudkan untuk menampung pemuda yang bandel atau bebas, tetapi dalam beberapa kasus, merupakan tempat fisik, seksual, dan pelecehan emosional anak-anak di tangan pendeta.

Setahun setelah O'Connor's SNL penampakan, kuburan massal ditemukan di lahan salah satu institusi tersebut, mendorong penyelidikan dari Komite PBB tentang Hak Anak. Ketika pelecehan ini dan ribuan kasus pelecehan anak lainnya di seluruh Irlandia dan AS akhirnya terungkap pada tahun 2000-an, target sebenarnya dari protes mengejutkan O'Connor menjadi semakin jelas.


Pada tahun 1992 Sinead O’Connor Merobek Foto Paus untuk Mengungkap Pelecehan Anak oleh Imam, Tidak Ada yang Mendengarkan

Lebih dari 25 tahun yang lalu, Sinead O’Connor mengejutkan pemirsa ketika dia merobek gambar Paus Yohanes Paulus II di sebuah episode Saturday Night Live. Tindakan itu disiarkan langsung ke jutaan orang dan penyiar serta komentator tidak dapat menjelaskan mengapa dia melakukan apa yang dia lakukan. Sekarang, seperti yang diilustrasikan oleh penemuan mengerikan baru-baru ini di Pennsylvania, kita sekarang tahu mengapa O’Connor melakukan ini.

Pada tahun 1992, tepat sebelum jeda iklan, O’Connor mengambil foto paus, mengangkatnya ke kamera, merobeknya menjadi dua, dan menyatakan bahwa “Kebaikan akan menang atas kejahatan” dan mencatat bahwa kita harus &# 8220 Lawan musuh yang sebenarnya.”

Pedofilia sudah lama merajalela di gereja Katolik. Namun, sampai baru-baru ini monster-monster dengan pakaian pendeta ini telah bertindak di bawah kedok gereja—perbuatan buruk mereka terhapus, anak-anak diabaikan, dan pelecehan mereka dibiarkan berlanjut.

Namun, baru-baru ini, semuanya mulai berubah setelah laporan mengerikan datang dari Pennsylvania minggu lalu yang merinci pelecehan yang merajalela oleh ratusan imam hanya di satu negara bagian. Tidak bertanggung jawab untuk berpikir bahwa pelecehan ini terjadi di Pennsylvania saja. Memang, seperti yang dijelaskan O’Connor, ia melintasi lautan.

Ketika O’Connor menyobek foto itu, dia berusaha mengekspos pelecehan ini. Namun, media dan gereja menulisnya sebagai “voodoo” dan secara keliru mengaitkannya dengan gerakan hak-hak perempuan. Seperti yang dicatat Atlantik pada 2012:

Di sebelah kanan, John Cardinal O’Connor di Katolik New York menyarankan bahwa penyanyi itu telah menggunakan “voodoo” atau “sihir simpatik” untuk secara fisik menghancurkan musuhnya di Vatikan—pilihan citra yang sangat buruk bagi otoritas Gereja yang berusaha membungkam seorang wanita yang blak-blakan. Di sebelah kiri, Richard Roeper di Chicago Sun-Times merayakan Sinead karena menyediakan “ momen televisi yang benar-benar hebat.” Dia berasumsi begitu saja bahwa dia memprotes posisi Vatikan tentang hak-hak perempuan atau kekerasan yang sedang berlangsung di Irlandia Utara, tetapi dia memfokuskan pujiannya pada O’Connor& #8217s kecerdasan sebagai penghibur.

Orang Amerika, dan dunia pada umumnya dibiarkan dalam kegelapan tentang apa yang sebenarnya dia maksudkan. Ini terlepas dari kenyataan bahwa O’Conner sendiri menjelaskan dengan tepat apa yang dia maksud dalam sebuah wawancara dengan Majalah Time satu bulan setelah penampilan di SNL.

Jelas bukan laki-lakinya—ini kantor dan simbol organisasi yang dia wakili… Di Irlandia, kami melihat orang-orang kami menunjukkan insiden pelecehan anak tertinggi di Eropa. Ini adalah akibat langsung dari fakta bahwa mereka tidak berhubungan dengan sejarah mereka sebagai orang Irlandia dan fakta bahwa di sekolah, para pendeta telah memukuli anak-anak selama bertahun-tahun dan melakukan pelecehan seksual terhadap mereka. Ini adalah contoh yang telah ditetapkan untuk rakyat Irlandia. Mereka telah dikendalikan oleh gereja, orang-orang yang memberi wewenang atas apa yang dilakukan terhadap mereka, yang memberikan izin atas apa yang dilakukan terhadap mereka.

Karena pelecehan anak yang merajalela di gereja Katolik belum sepenuhnya terungkap, pewawancara tidak dapat membuat hubungan antara paus dan pelecehan anak, jadi O’Connor menjelaskan lebih jauh tentang pelecehannya sendiri saat dia bersekolah di sekolah Katolik.

Seksual dan fisik. Psikologis. Rohani. Emosional. Lisan. Saya pergi ke sekolah setiap hari dengan luka memar, bisul, bintil dan bekas luka di wajah, sebut saja. Tidak ada yang pernah mengatakan kata berdarah atau melakukan sesuatu. Tentu saja saya sangat marah dengan semuanya, dan saya harus mencari tahu mengapa hal itu terjadi. Hal yang paling membantu saya adalah kelompok 12 langkah, Anak-anak Dewasa dari Pecandu Alkohol/Keluarga Disfungsional. Ibuku adalah seorang pecandu Valium. Apa yang terjadi pada saya adalah akibat langsung dari apa yang terjadi pada ibu saya dan apa yang terjadi padanya di rumahnya dan di sekolah.

O’Connor adalah satu dari ribuan anak di seluruh dunia yang dilecehkan oleh pendeta di sekolah-sekolah Katolik. Ketika para imam atau klerus kedapatan melecehkan anak-anak, mereka tidak diusir, malah sebagian besar waktu, mereka hanya dipindahkan ke keuskupan baru.

Kita sekarang melihat hasil yang tak terelakkan dari penyamaran yang menjijikkan seperti itu.

Seperti yang dilaporkan TFTP minggu lalu, sebuah laporan juri yang pedas mengungkapkan bahwa ratusan imam Katolik di negara bagian Pennsylvania melakukan pelecehan seksual terhadap anak-anak kecil, sebagian berfokus secara khusus pada Pittsburgh di mana hampir 100 imam dituduh menjalankan jaringan pedofilia di mana mereka saling membantu memangsa. pada anak-anak tak berdaya tanpa pengawasan.

Laporan tersebut mengklaim bahwa setidaknya 99 imam di Keuskupan Pittsburgh terlibat dalam jaringan pedofil—sembilan di antaranya tidak disebutkan namanya—dan mereka menerima bantuan dari pejabat setempat yang menolak untuk menyelidiki pelecehan tersebut karena dianggap “publisitas buruk” untuk Gereja Katolik.

Para imam itu dituduh bekerja sama dalam lingkaran predator yang berlangsung selama bertahun-tahun di mana mereka “membuat pornografi anak, berbagi informasi intelijen tentang korban dan memberikan salib emas besar kepada anak laki-laki tertentu untuk menandai mereka sebagai telah 'dipersiapkan', untuk pelecehan,” menurut laporan dari Penn Live.

Satu minggu setelah O’Connor merobek foto paus, aktor Joe Pesci menampilkan foto robek yang sama, mencatat bahwa dia telah merekamnya kembali. Kata-katanya disambut tepuk tangan meriah. Pesci kemudian mengancam akan “memukul” O’Connor atas apa yang dia lakukan, dan penonton bereaksi dengan lebih banyak tepuk tangan.

Semakin banyak korupsi dan penyalahgunaan ini terungkap, tampaknya Pesci, penggemar SNL tahun 90'an dan dunia mungkin berutang permintaan maaf kepada Sinead O'Connor karena dia melampaui target 25 tahun yang lalu—dan tidak ada yang mendengarkan.


Sinead O'Connor Merobek Foto Paus di SNL

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Ingatkah Anda ketika Sinead O’Connor merobek foto paus di SNL?

Sinead O&rsquoConnor memiliki sejumlah momen kontroversial dalam kariernya yang panjang selama puluhan tahun.

Mungkin salah satu yang paling banyak dibicarakan, adalah saat dia merobek foto paus di Saturday Night Live (SNL) percaya atau tidak, itu 28 tahun yang lalu hari ini.

Penonton SNL dibuat tercengang ketika penyanyi Nothing Compares 2U merobek foto Paus Yohanes Paulus II selama siaran langsung dari Rockefeller di AS pada 3 Oktober 1992.

Momen ikonik yang sekarang terjadi saat dia memberikan penampilan acapella dari lagu Bob Marley &lsquoWar&rsquo, menggantikan lirik dengan kata-kata &lsquochild abuse&rsquo.

Saat dia sedang membungkus, dia mengangkat foto Paus ke kamera dan merobeknya menjadi beberapa bagian sambil menyatakan &lsquomelawan musuh yang sebenarnya.&rsquo

Seperti yang dapat Anda bayangkan, penonton di rumah dikejutkan oleh tindakan Sinead dan NBC melaporkan hampir 1.000 panggilan telepon yang marah selama beberapa hari berikutnya.

Sementara banyak yang keluar untuk mengkritik Sinead &ndash termasuk aktor Joe Pesci yang menempelkan foto yang sama kembali minggu berikutnya di SNL &ndash dia berdiri teguh dalam sebuah surat yang menyatakan bahwa dia ingin orang &lsquomenghadapi beberapa kebenaran yang sangat sulit&rsquo.

Setelah penampilannya, Dubliner mengirim surat ke lusinan organisasi berita, menjelaskan: &lsquoSatu-satunya alasan saya membuka mulut untuk bernyanyi adalah agar saya menceritakan kisah saya dan membuatnya didengar&rsquo.

&lsquoKisah saya adalah kisah tentang jutaan anak yang tak terhitung jumlahnya yang keluarga dan bangsanya tercabik-cabik dalam nama Yesus Kristus,&rsquo tulisnya, seperti dilansir LA Times.

Berbicara kepada Time bulan berikutnya, seperti dilansir The Atlantic, dia mengatakan masalahnya bukan dengan paus secara pribadi tetapi dengan &lsquote kantor dan simbol organisasi yang dia wakili.&rsquo

Pada tahun 2010, menulis di Washington Post, penyanyi itu menjelaskan: &lsquoSaya tahu tindakan saya akan menyebabkan masalah, tetapi saya ingin memaksakan percakapan di mana ada kebutuhan untuk itu&rsquo.

Pada bulan Maret 2020, Sinead dinobatkan sebagai Time&rsquos Woman of the Year untuk tahun 1992 di majalah&rsquos 100 Women of the Year.

Aktor dan sutradara Olivia Wilde menulis tentang Sinead yang ikonik: &lsquoSebagai seorang wanita Irlandia, O&rsquoConnor sadar akan bahaya mengkritik entitas yang kuat seperti gereja.

&lsquoDia mengambil risiko itu untuk secara terbuka menuntut keadilan bagi anak-anak yang dilecehkan secara seksual oleh anggota pendeta. Sembilan tahun setelah penampilannya, Paus Yohanes Paulus II mengakui dan meminta maaf atas sejarah panjang pelecehan seksual yang dilakukan gereja.

Setelah artikel Time, Sinead mengatakan dia 'merasa terhormat dan senang' telah dimasukkan, tetapi menambahkan dalam tweet terpisah: &lsquoAda satu kesalahan dalam artikel Time, yang pertama kali dicetak tahun lalu tetapi tidak akurat.

&lsquoSaya tidak pernah mengalami pelecehan seksual oleh pendeta. Dan saya tidak pernah mengatakan saya. Dan saya tidak tahu bagaimana orang memperolehnya dari apa pun yang saya katakan. Pelaku kekerasan saya bukan ulama.&rsquo


Sinéad O'Connor menjelaskan mengapa dia merobek foto paus di 'SNL'

Setelah bertahun-tahun berspekulasi, musisi Irlandia Sinead O’Connor mengungkapkan alasannya di balik penampilannya yang terkenal di “Saturday Night Live” di mana dia menghancurkan foto Paus. Pelantun “Trouble of the World” ini membuat gebrakan dalam memoar barunya, “Memories,” yang dikutip oleh This Week Rolling stone.

Insiden itu terjadi pada Oktober 1992, ketika penyanyi “Success Made Our Home Failure” Sebuah foto Paus Yohanes Paulus II terpotong di atas panggung saat tampil di “SNL”. Seperti yang dilaporkan Rolling Stone, aksi tersebut menyebabkan pemenang Grammy diusir dari NBC seumur hidup, dan beberapa minggu kemudian bahkan turun dari panggung di konser penghormatan Bob Dylan.

Pada saat itu, O’Connor, sekarang 54 tahun, mengatakan bahwa dia telah merobek foto itu untuk memprotes pelecehan seksual terhadap anak-anak oleh Gereja Katolik. Namun, dia baru-baru ini mengungkapkan bahwa ceritanya berjalan jauh lebih dalam.

“Niat saya selalu untuk menghancurkan foto Paus tentang ibu saya,” tulisnya. “Ini mewakili kebohongan dan pembohong dan pelecehan. Orang-orang yang menyimpan barang-barang ini adalah iblis, seperti ibuku.”

Beberapa bulan sebelum Sinead O’Connor tampil di “SNL” pada bulan Juni 1992. Getty Images

O’Connor menulis bahwa dia pergi ke rumah ibunya setelah kematiannya dan “mengambil dari dinding kamarnya satu-satunya gambar yang pernah dia miliki, yaitu gambar Paus Yohanes Paulus II.”

Artis tersebut menjelaskan bahwa “ini diambil ketika dia melakukan tur ke Irlandia pada tahun 1979.” Dia ingat bagaimana Paus telah memberi tahu “orang-orang muda Irlandia” bahwa dia memuja mereka setelah pertunjukan mencium tanah di bandara Dublin, sebagai jika penerbangannya “terlalu menakutkan.”

“Sungguh suatu ejekan,” mengejek Muslim Katolik Roma yang dibesarkan dalam memoar itu. “Tidak ada yang mencintai kami. Bahkan bukan Tuhan. Tentu, bahkan orang tua kami tidak tahan dengan kami.”

Sinead O’Connor’s New Memoir.Memories, “Out 1 Juni. Gambar Getty

Dia bilang dia menyimpannya bersamanya selama bertahun-tahun. “Saya tidak pernah tahu kapan, di mana atau bagaimana saya akan menghancurkannya, tetapi saya akan menghancurkannya ketika waktunya tepat,” katanya.

Sebelum penampilannya di “SNL”, penyanyi Irlandia-Inggris itu membaca artikel di surat kabar Irlandia tentang anak-anak yang dilecehkan oleh para pendeta yang kemudian pergi tanpa pendamping.

Aksi merobek foto itu dilaporkan terinspirasi oleh insiden 1978 ketika Bob Geldof merobek foto Olivia Newton-John dan John Travolta di “Top of the Pops”. Musisi tersebut dilaporkan sangat marah karena rekor duo '8220Summer Nights” menduduki puncak tangga lagu selama tujuh minggu sebelum single hit mereka “Rat Trap” akhirnya mencapai mereka.

Hampir 30 tahun kemudian, O’Connor tidak menyesal memotret Pope di depan kamera.

“Semua orang menginginkan bintang pop, lihat?” Dia menulis. “Tapi saya seorang penyanyi protes. Aku hanya punya barang untuk turun dari dadaku. Saya tidak memiliki keinginan untuk ketenaran.”


Sinéad O'Connor masih utuh

BRAY, IRLANDIA — Kantor Sinéad O'Connor adalah teras kaca berbentuk segi lima yang juga merupakan pintu masuk ke rumahnya. Hampir setiap hari, sebelum matahari terbit di atas Laut Irlandia, dia akan duduk di sana, merokok, menyesap secangkir kopi manis, atau mengaduk-aduk iPad-nya. Dia bahkan mungkin mengambil gitar.

Saat air beriak tertiup angin, tempat itu bisa menjadi sangat indah, "Ulysses" bermunculan. Bukan berarti O'Connor, yang lahir hanya empat perhentian di jalur kereta di pinggiran Dublin, Glenageary, merasa sangat romantis tentang pengaturannya.

"Saya f --- ing benci tinggal di Irlandia," katanya. “Rumah spiritual saya adalah Amerika. Saya tahu bahwa bangau saya seharusnya menjatuhkan saya di Amerika. Tapi dia mabuk di Dublin. Membeku, itu menyedihkan. Semuanya sangat mahal. Saya suka Amerika, tetapi saya tidak akan pernah bisa meninggalkan Irlandia. Saya tidak akan meninggalkan cucu atau anak-anak saya.”

Ada empat anak, sepasang cucu, empat mantan suami dan seorang mantan pacar, Frank, yang tinggal tidak jauh dari Strand Road bersama putra mereka, Yeshua, 13 tahun. Ada ayahnya, seorang saudara perempuan dan tiga saudara laki-laki, semuanya dalam sebuah drive. Mereka mengenalnya bukan sebagai bintang pop yang menjadi terkenal dengan menyanyikan "Nothing Compares 2 U," tetapi sebagai wanita yang cerdas, penyayang, sulit, tidak kenal takut, suka bermain, dan tidak dapat diprediksi yang telah berjuang, secara pribadi dan profesional, sejak dia merobek foto itu. dari paus di "Saturday Night Live" pada tahun 1992. Dan mereka ingat terakhir kali O'Connor meninggalkan rumah.

Pada tahun 2015, dokter di Irlandia melakukan histerektomi radikal untuk meredakan endometriosis kronis O'Connor. Tetapi prosedur itu mendorongnya ke menopause dini, yang tidak terdiagnosis dan tidak diobati, katanya, dan membuatnya menjadi "benar-benar mental." Dia pindah ke Chicago, di mana dia punya teman, lalu pindah ke Waukegan terdekat, tinggal di motel dan menjadi sukarelawan di rumah sakit veteran. Saat depresinya semakin dalam, dia pergi ke San Francisco dan memeriksakan diri ke pusat perawatan yang dihormati. Dia akhirnya mendarat di New Jersey Travelodge, di mana, pada Agustus 2017, O'Connor memposting permohonan 12 menit di Facebook yang merujuk pada upaya bunuh diri dan kesepian yang intens. Itu menyebabkan penampilan yang keliru di “Dr. Fil.”

John Reynolds, suami pertamanya dan produser lamanya, terbang ke Amerika Serikat dan membawa pulang O'Connor ke Irlandia. Dan dengan itu, salah satu seniman musik kontemporer terbesar dan paling orisinal tampaknya menghilang.

Tapi bulan lalu, O'Connor, 53, diam-diam melakukan perjalanan ke Pantai Barat untuk pembukaan tur mini, delapan pertunjukan klub yang tersebar selama 12 hari. Mereka adalah langkah pertama untuk merebut kembali karir yang hampir ditinggalkan selama tahun-tahun kekacauan, konflik keluarga, dan pertunjukan yang dibatalkan. Semua tampak dimaafkan. Kerumunan terpesona ketika O'Connor, dengan kaki telanjang dan jilbab - dia masuk Islam pada tahun 2018 - memukau mereka dengan set 17 lagu yang membentang sepanjang karirnya.

Sudah lima tahun sejak terakhir kali penonton melihat Sinead O'Connor di atas panggung dan tiga tahun sejak teriakan minta tolong yang memilukan. (Erin Patrick O'Connor/The Washington Post)

“Untuk mengatakan itu religius akan meremehkan,” kata Kathleen Hanna dari Bikini Kill, yang melihat pertunjukan 9 Februari di El Rey Theatre di Los Angeles.

Masih ada saat-saat ketika O'Connor akan hancur, baik dalam kemarahan, air mata, atau semacam kebencian pada diri sendiri. Namun, selama perawatan terakhirnya di rumah sakit, yang berakhir Mei lalu, dia belajar sebuah konsep penting, yang telah menjadi mantranya: penerimaan radikal. Sebagai seorang gadis, dia menderita pelecehan dari ibunya yang sangat religius yang tetap bersamanya selama beberapa dekade setelah kematian ibunya. Di masa lalu, dia mencoba melawan dan menangkisnya, terkadang dengan menyerang orang lain. Dia belajar bahwa ini tidak membantu.

"Karena rasa sakit seperti itu tidak hilang," kata O'Connor. “Kamu hanya belajar untuk hidup dengannya. Musik adalah tempat saya bisa mengelolanya.”

O'Connor, kanan, duduk bersama Jackie Rainey, anggota bandnya, di El Rey Theatre di Los Angeles, di mana dia tampil pada 9 Februari. (Lindsey Best untuk The Washington Post)

Menerjemahkan rasa sakit

Dia bisa sangat tenang dan sabar. Dia juga bisa meledak. Dia dapat berbicara dengan fasih tentang Yesus atau Alquran atau cukup membiru untuk membuat Amy Schumer tersipu, terkadang dalam percakapan yang sama. Dia bisa menjadi pemalu dan tidak aman. Namun dia tidak ragu-ragu untuk menatap kamera di televisi Amerika untuk memanggil salah satu pria paling kuat di dunia.

“Semuanya adalah jiwa,” kata Bob Geldof, salah satu penyelenggara Live Aid dan vokalis Boomtown Rats yang tumbuh di lingkungan yang sama dengan O'Connor. “Ini adalah jiwa yang bermasalah dan itu menimbulkan rasa sakit dan upaya untuk menemukan pemahaman melalui suaranya dan melalui musiknya. Rasa sakit menimbulkan kemarahan besar, yang mungkin tidak dipahami sama sekali. [Orang] tidak begitu memahami intensitas atau bagaimana rasa sakit pribadi diterjemahkan menjadi semacam kemarahan empati. Intinya adalah, Anda tidak perlu melakukannya. Anda bisa mendengarkan salah satu lagunya.”

Lagu-lagunya. Sangat melek huruf, dengan referensi ke Yeats, Alex Haley dan Perjanjian Lama. Perpaduan antara fakta dan fiksi. Takut, apakah mendokumentasikan rasisme, kemunafikan politik atau pacar yang buruk.

Michael Stipe ingat sangat dipengaruhi oleh O'Connor di akhir tahun 80-an. Dia akhirnya mengadopsi tingkah lakunya untuk penampilannya sendiri dalam video R.E.M. untuk “Losing My Religion.” Dia juga mengcover salah satu lagunya, "The Last Day of Our Acquaintance," dalam konser.

“Dalam timeline saya, ada garis langsung dari Patti Smith ke Sinead O’Connor,” kata Stipe, mengacu pada pemenang penyair punk tahun 1970-an. “Begitu banyak orang yang telah mengangkat dirinya, dari saya hingga Miley Cyrus. Dia salah satu ikon kami yang hebat dan hidup.”

O'Connor tampil di Belanda pada tahun 1988. (Frans Schellekens/Redferns/Getty Images)

Daya tarik penyanyi Irlandia itu lebih dari sekadar musik. (Frans Schellekens/Redferns/Getty Images)

O'Connor tampil di Belanda pada tahun 1988. (Frans Schellekens/Redferns/Getty Images) Daya tarik penyanyi Irlandia itu lebih dari sekadar musik. (Frans Schellekens/Redferns/Getty Images)

Mungkin sulit, hari ini, untuk memahami betapa mengejutkannya bertemu dengan O'Connor ketika dia pertama kali mendarat di akhir 1980-an. Ini sebelum Courtney Love, Alanis Morissette, riot grrrls, Liz Phair atau Lilith Fair. Dengan pengecualian langka — Madonna, Annie Lennox — para wanita di MTV memainkan permen pop atau menjadi eye candy untuk band-band hair metal yang menyeramkan. O'Connor, masih berusia 20 tahun ketika debutnya, "The Lion and the Cobra," tiba pada tahun 1987, bisa bernyanyi dengan siapa saja, meluncur dari ungkapan yang paling halus ke lolongan penuh, oktaf-melompat. Dia menulis salah satu lagu politik paling memilukan saat itu, "Black Boys on Mopeds" dan membuat puisi abad ke-17 dengan irama "Funky Drummer" James Brown. Video menakjubkan "Nothing Compares 2 U," sebagian besar merupakan close-up dari wajah ekspresif O'Connor, menjadikannya artis wanita pertama yang memenangkan video MTV tahun ini.

Dan daya tariknya lebih dari sekadar musik. Ada juga tampilan. Kepala berdengung, Doc Martens, matanya tajam dan intens kecuali saat dia tersenyum nakal dan berlesung pipit. Seolah ada lelucon yang hanya dia yang mengerti.

“Suaranya membuat saya merasa seperti saya ada di dunia yang lebih besar,” kata Hanna, seorang mahasiswa ketika dia mendapatkan rekaman O'Connor pertamanya. “Dia bisa menyanyikan sesuatu dengan banyak bagian yang indah, tetapi Anda juga bisa mendengar kemarahan, seksualitas, dan humor.”

Fiona Apple berusia 11 tahun ketika dia menonton Grammy di TV pada tahun 1989. O'Connor membawakan "Mandinka" sendirian di atas panggung, mengenakan atasan bra dan setelan tidur putranya Jake dimasukkan ke dalam celana jinsnya.

"Dia menginspirasi saya," kata Apple. “Dia menunjukkan kepada saya bagaimana menjadi diri sendiri yang murni dan bebas.”

Tadi malam, saya bermimpi saya terbakar

Api di sekitar terasa sangat nyata bagiku

Dan saat mereka naik lebih tinggi dan lebih tinggi.

Aku mendengar suara manismu memanggilku.

Sama seperti, seperti, seperti laut yang damai.

Itulah arti kehadiranmu yang bersinar bagiku.

Anda terlalu muda untuk kecanduan seperti Anda.

Berlari seperti Anda tidak punya ibu atau ayah.

Dan aku sudah tua dan aku tidak bisa mengejarmu lagi.

Di jalan atau di bawah jembatan atau di atas tembok.

Pulang. Pulanglah, anak muda.

Letakkan jalan-jalan dan datang.

Karena mereka bukan milikmu.

Dan surga yang begitu manis terletak di bawah kaki ibumu.

Dan aku tidak lengkap tanpamu.

Malam ini aku akan bermimpi kita berada di surga.

Duduk di bawah pohon apel itu.

Tidak berada di enam atau tujuh.

Hanya bersamamu bersamaku.

Sama seperti, seperti, seperti laut yang damai.

Itulah kehadiranmu yang bersinar bagiku.

O'Connor mengatakan momen paling membanggakannya tetap menjadi yang paling terkenal, penampilan tahun 1992 di "Saturday Night Live." Saat itulah dia memutuskan, tanpa memberi tahu produser acara atau humasnya, dia akan menggunakan penampilan promosinya untuk menyampaikan pesan politik ke salah satu targetnya yang sering, Gereja Katolik. Ini lebih dari satu dekade sebelum laporan luas di pers Amerika tentang pelecehan seksual dan ditutup-tutupi oleh pendeta. Pada saat itu, di Irlandia, O'Connor telah melihat laporan perilaku yang lebih kecil.

Setelah menyanyikan lagu protes Bob Marley, "War," O'Connor mengangkat foto Paus Yohanes Paulus II ke kamera, merobek gambar itu menjadi beberapa bagian dan menyatakan "melawan musuh yang sebenarnya."

Kamera memotong dalam diam. Minggu itu, O'Connor diserang di berita utama (New York Newsday: "No hair, no taste"), catatannya ditumpuk dan digulung di Manhattan dan, di penghargaan Madison Square Garden yang terjual habis untuk Bob Dylan, teriakan marah mengusirnya dari panggung.

O'Connor sangat senang bulan ini ketika Majalah Time menobatkannya sebagai salah satu dari 100 Wanita Tahun Ini, bersama Hillary Clinton, Aretha Franklin dan Angela Davis, dan memilih risiko yang dia ambil dalam membuat pendirian publik seperti itu. Tetapi 28 tahun sejak robeknya gambar paus, katanya, “sangat mengasingkan. Telah diperlakukan seperti kasus mental karena itu. Di luar panggung dan di atas. Secara pribadi dan di depan umum. Bahkan di tempat tidurku.”

“Jika mereka bisa membakarnya di tiang pancang,” kata Hanna, “mereka akan melakukannya.”

Kris Kristofferson berdiri dengan O'Connor selama penghormatan Bob Dylan 1992 di Madison Square Garden New York, tak lama setelah kontroversi foto "Saturday Night Live". (Ron Frehm/AP)

Menemukan kedamaian

Ada saat-saat ketika O'Connor sangat ingin memanggil orang-orang yang dia rasa bersalah. Daftar targetnya panjang, termasuk anggota keluarga, manajer, teman, Bono, Madonna, Pangeran, bahkan Bob Geldof. Dia bertengkar di depan umum dengan Miley Cyrus setelah menulis surat terbuka, pada 2013, memperingatkan penyanyi itu "dalam semangat keibuan dan dengan cinta" bahwa video "Wrecking Ball"-nya menunjukkan bahwa dia sedang "germo". Tiga tahun lalu, dia menuduh Arsenio Hall memasok obat-obatan kepada Pangeran, memicu gugatan $ 5 juta dari mantan pembawa acara talk show, yang kemudian dia batalkan.

Meskipun O'Connor mengakui keduanya berada di dalam dan menyebabkan rasa sakit yang cukup besar, dia juga mengatakan beberapa luka itu tidak disengaja.

“Sifat sejati saya,” katanya, “adalah sebagai orang yang sangat penyayang yang tidak ingin menyakiti orang lain atau menyakiti atau disakiti. Itu tidak berarti bahwa, sebagai seorang seniman, saya akan berhenti menantang seniman lain. Itu tidak berarti bahwa saya tidak lagi f---ing Sinead O'Connor. Itu hanya berarti aku bukan meriam yang longgar.”

O'Connor masuk Islam pada 2018. (Lindsey Best untuk The Washington Post)

Dia menemukan semacam kedamaian dalam Islam, mengadopsi nama Muslim, Shuhada, meskipun dia terus menggunakan Sinead secara profesional. Keindahan menjadi seorang Muslim adalah dia tidak harus membuang apa yang dia hargai tentang agama lain.

“Kekristenan berbohong kepada saya sebagai orang Irlandia,” katanya. “Kekristenan tidak melakukan apa-apa selain memperkosa orang-orang Irlandia, secara metaforis dan harfiah. Itu sebabnya saya suka Islam. Karena saya bisa membawa barang-barang yang saya peluk. Yesus masih ada di sana tetapi Yesuslah yang masuk akal bagi saya.”

Pesan teks ini adalah bagian dari pertukaran dengan penulis Geoff Edgers. Dia bertanya kepada O'Connor mengapa dia membawa begitu banyak rasa bersalah atas kemarahan yang berakar pada pelecehan yang dilakukan oleh ibunya.

Rabu, 4 Maret, 5:00 GMT

Aku merasa seperti aku adalah monster. Saya merasa mengerikan. Saya mengalahkan s- - - yang hidup dari diri saya sendiri. Penuh kesedihan tentang itu akan menjadi cara yang lebih baik untuk menggambarkannya


Sinéad O'Connor: 'Saya akan selalu sedikit gila, tapi tidak apa-apa'

S inéad O'Connor telah cukup banyak tidak terlihat selama beberapa tahun terakhir. Namun, ada alasan bagus, dia memberi tahu saya dengan sikap acuh tak acuh yang biasa terhadap sopan santun sosial. “Saya telah menghabiskan sebagian besar waktu di rumah gila. Saya sudah praktis tinggal di sana selama enam tahun.” Dia berhenti, mengambil tarikan kuat pada homonya, dan memperingatkan saya agar tidak salah secara politis. "Kami sendiri yang bisa menyebutnya rumah gila - pasien."

O'Connor adalah musik yang hebat - versi 1990 dari Prince's Nothing Compares 2 U adalah salah satu dari lima menit paling transenden dalam sejarah pop, air mata jatuh dari matanya dalam video yang menyertai salah satu gambarnya yang paling indah. Single ini menduduki puncak tangga lagu di seluruh dunia, seperti halnya album yang diambil darinya, I Do Not Want What I Haven't Got. Yang mengherankan, dalam 31 tahun yang telah berlalu, dia tidak pernah memiliki single hit Top 10 Inggris lainnya dan hanya satu album Top 10. Namun dia tetap menjadi nama rumah tangga.

Sinéad O'Connor menyanyikan Nothing Compares 2 U

Mungkin O'Connor selalu ditakdirkan untuk terkenal hanya karena menjadi dirinya sendiri: skinhead malaikat yang bersumpah seperti polisi dan mengejutkan dunia dengan tuduhan pelecehan seks anak seorang wanita yang memainkan krisis kesehatan mentalnya sendiri di depan umum yang menjadi seorang Katolik imam dan kemudian "kembali" ke Islam yang memiliki empat anak dari empat pria yang berbeda, ketika semua hal ini tidak pernah terdengar atau tabu. Album-albumnya sering kali tidak komersial – lagu-lagu tradisional Irlandia di Sean-Nós Nua, cover reggae root di Throw Down Your Arms. Ada album yang indah dan relatif poppy, seperti Universal Mother, tetapi bahkan yang menampilkan polemik kata-kata tentang mengapa kelaparan Irlandia sebenarnya bukan kelaparan, dan membandingkan negara itu dengan anak yang dilecehkan. O'Connor harus menjadi salah satu bintang pop yang paling enggan. Ketika dia diberi tahu Tidak Ada yang Membandingkan 2 U berada di No 1, dia menangis – dan bukan karena bahagia.

Bukan hanya keinginannya untuk mengacungkan dua jari di konvensi yang membuatnya sangat mempesona. O'Connor adalah sosok yang sangat empatik, dia adalah kerentanan yang bisa kita semua hubungkan. Dan dia sering terbukti benar, lama setelah kejadian itu. Terakhir kali kami bertemu, 11 tahun yang lalu, O'Connor adalah seorang imam Katolik (dia telah ditahbiskan oleh sebuah gereja yang memisahkan diri pada tahun 1999) yang baru saja dibenarkan. Pada tahun 1992, dia telah merobek gambar Paus Yohanes Paulus II di Saturday Night Live sebagai protes atas pelecehan seks anak di gereja Katolik. Pada saat itu banyak orang menganggapnya sebagai seorang humas yang gila. Dua minggu kemudian dia dicemooh dari panggung di konser penghormatan Bob Dylan, dan rekornya dihancurkan di depan umum. Namun pada tahun 2010 Paus Benediktus XVI mengeluarkan permintaan maaf kepada para korban pelecehan seksual selama puluhan tahun oleh para imam Katolik di Irlandia, mengungkapkan "rasa malu dan penyesalan" atas "tindakan dosa dan kriminal" mereka. (Dia memandang permintaan maaf itu sama sekali tidak memadai, menyebut Vatikan "sarang iblis dan surga bagi penjahat".)

Di acara The Roxy TV pada tahun 1987. Foto: ITV/Rex/Shutterstock

Sekarang, O'Connor menerbitkan memoarnya. Buku, Rememberings, sudah lama dibuat. Untuk pertama kalinya, dia menulis tentang pelecehan masa kecil yang dideritanya di tangan ibunya. Buku ini adalah serangkaian sketsa yang diamati dengan indah daripada otobiografi konvensional: dia membawa kita dari pelecehan ke kleptomania, sekolah reformasi, ketenaran pop, umpan-paus, bid'ah, kemurtadan, putus cinta, kehancuran, anak-anak, pernikahan dan bercinta selebriti yang telah membentuk hidupnya. Tulisannya, terutama ketika menceritakan masa kecilnya, liris, lucu dan sedih, dan wahyu datang tebal dan cepat.

Dia ada di rumah di Wicklow ketika kami berbicara, mengenakan jumper abu-abu abu-abu, jilbab abu-abu (dia mengubah nama di luar panggung menjadi Shuhada Sadaqat ketika dia menjadi Muslim pada 2018), skinhead abu-abu dan abu-abu. Dia berusia 54 tahun sekarang, pipinya lebih bulat tetapi matanya masih cerah. Selama tiga jam, dia berbicara dan berbicara - fasih, tidak bijaksana, bermulut kecil, pedih, konspirasi.

‘Saya lahir dengan keyakinan yang besar dan tidak pernah pergi.’ Foto: Linda Brownlee/The Guardian

Dalam Rememberings, dia menangkap cara dia melihat dunia ketika dia masih muda. She describes her fear on the day her father left, and her mother moved her and her siblings into the garden hut and locked them out of the house. She was eight years old. “I knelt on the ground in front of the gable wall and wailed up to the landing window to get her to let us into the house when it got dark. That is when I officially lost my mind and became afraid of the size of the sky.” This particular incident shaped much of her life, she tells me. “That’s why I’m agoraphobic. I find it difficult being outside. I don’t mind when it turns into black night, but once the hours of dusk come, I get very anxious.”

O’Connor grew up in Glenageary, County Dublin, the third of five children born to Marie and John. The family were middle-class, fairly well off, practising Catholics and dysfunctional. When her parents split up, she says, her father (a structural engineer turned barrister) became only the second man in Ireland awarded custody of his children and a campaigner for the right to divorce.

In the book, she recounts her mother’s physical and sexual abuse, including the times she ordered O’Connor to strip naked, lie on the floor with her arms and legs splayed open, then hit her repeatedly in her private parts. She is convinced her mother wanted to destroy her reproductive organs. “She had a thing about wanting me to be a boy. She didn’t want girls.”

Performing in 1997. Photograph: Simon Ritter/Redferns

O’Connor closely resembled her mother. Was she aware at the time of how alike they looked? “Yes. I’ve often thought she did all this to me because I was the child who reminded her most of herself.” Did it worry her that she looked like her? “Yeah. I think that’s why I continue to shave my head, because if I have hair I look more like her and I don’t like to see her in the mirror. There’s no picture of her in the book.”

She says it was her mother who forced her into thieving as a little girl. They would collect money in charity boxes, then Marie would steal all the donations – sometimes as much as £200 a night. “My mother was a kleptomaniac. She would visit houses that were for sale just so she could steal shit out of them. She would take money out of the church plate.” But her parents had plenty of money, didn’t they? “Exactly. My father was very well-off. When my mother died, we were living like she had no money, with no heat, no electricity, no hot water. The bitch dies and there’s 250 grand in the bank!”

O’Connor says she never wanted to steal, but then she found she was addicted to it, like her mother. “I became a kleptomaniac as well. My father took me on holiday with the rest of the kids when I was 13 or 14 and I stole a rug out of the hotel room. I’d steal shit for the sake of stealing it.” She would take things from shops to order for her schoolfriends. The young O’Connor was a talented sprinter she’d put on the clothes she wanted to nick, walk to the exit, then run. At the age of 14, she got caught stealing a pair of gold shoes for a mate and was sent to a reform school run by nuns.

When O’Connor was 18, her mother was killed in a car crash. In the past, she has said she loved her despite everything, and never recovered from her death. Today, she simply says she was relieved that she died. Does she think her mother was ill or just cruel? “I think she was an evil person.” But she doesn’t believe it was her fault. “When I look at photos of the woman she was before she got married, she was a joyful, gleaming, happy young woman, and I feel something possessed her. It was the devil in her.”

‘I was furious. Nobody could deal with me.’ Photograph: Linda Brownlee/The Guardian

O’Connor’s worldview has always been one of gods and devils – perhaps not surprisingly for somebody who was brought up to believe the incontestable truth of the scriptures. Of her 20-odd tattoos, all but one are scriptural. On the back of her hand is printed “The lion of Judah shall break every chain” (“My Rastafari fist”), on the other “Lumen Christi” (light of Christ), and on her chest is a huge Jesus tattoo. On her neck is “All things must pass”, another biblical quote. The exception is a tattoo saying “Vampire slayer” – which is what some friends called her after the Saturday Night Live incident.

She began writing her memoir in January 2015 when she was in a good place. But then she had a prolonged and catastrophic breakdown, brought on partly by one of her children becoming seriously ill she also had a radical hysterectomy later that year. “Everything went fucking pear-shaped. I went through what you call surgical menopause, which is like menopause multiplied by 10,000. Then I didn’t write anything again for four years. The first half I wrote on a laptop at home, the second half I dictated from the nuthouse.” The difference is obvious – the early part of the book is economic, tonally assured, poetic, writerly the latter pacy, gossipy and entertaining.

After the hysterectomy, her mental health took a dive. “Nobody had explained to me or my family that she’s going to be a crazy bitch because we took her ovaries for no reason. So the children were terrified of me.” How was she terrifying? “Angry. Raging. I was furious. I was completely gone. I was suicidal.” She says she scared everybody off. “Nobody could deal with me. I was very isolated and alone. I’d be looking at them, thinking, what the hell are they all frightened of?”

She admitted herself as an inpatient to the psychiatric hospital St Patrick’s in Dublin in 2016. O’Connor assumed the staff wouldn’t be able to cope with her either. She says she was hard work when she arrived on the locked ward. “You test them. You show them your ugly side and you’re like: ‘I bet you throw me out now.’ After about three years I realised they weren’t going anywhere. In fact they loved me very much indeed.”

Rememberings is partly dedicated to St Patrick’s. She calls the hospital her second home. “Thank God I spent a lot of the last six years there, because otherwise I wouldn’t be alive.” Most of the time, she was on an open ward, learning about her mental health. “I’m 10% bipolar, apparently, 40% complex traumatic stress and the rest is borderline personality disorder.” Did she try to kill herself in hospital? "Tidak. Tidak pernah. I went there all the time because I was suicidal. I would take myself there. In the past I have made several suicide attempts. I would take the pills and say to God: ‘OK it’s up to you, you decide’ and then of course I would wake up three or four days later. Clearly God thinks I’m such a pain in the arse that he doesn’t want me either.” She grins. “I’m a strong little fucker. I wasn’t meant to die.”

It was the times when she signed herself out of their care that the disasters happened. In 2017, she convinced herself everybody in Ireland and Britain had given up on her, so she headed for America to see friends. In fact, she ended up living alone in a motel in not-so-quiet desperation. That was when she put a video on Facebook in tears to tell the world she was in urgent need of help: “My entire life is revolving around not dying, and that’s not living.” It was terrifying – for her and for her fans. She managed to get back to Ireland, and readmitted herself to hospital. Today, she says she wasn’t only mentally ill at the time, she was in physical agony with gallstones. Social media has often brought the worst out of her. “Twitter is really for lonesome people, isn’t it?” dia berkata. “And I was desperately, desperately lonely.”

In one way or another, O’Connor says, she has always had issues with self-esteem. In the book she writes about how her sister Éimear tried to boost her. “She made me look in the mirror when I was 23 or 24 and say, ‘I am loving, I am lovable, I love and accept myself exactly as I am’ and she’d make me give myself a kiss.” And did she believe it? “I probably only started believing in January of this year.” Has she kept on doing it? “Sometimes I still do it. If I’ve managed to achieve something if I’ve managed to have a shower or I’ve managed to clean the house, I’ll say to myself: ‘You’ve achieved a lot today, that was great.’ But I don’t do it looking in the mirror.” She pauses. “Now and again I’ll give myself a kiss in the mirror or say, you fucking rock!”

On stage in San Francisco in 2020. Photograph: Tim Mosenfelder/Getty Images

Her last stint at St Patrick’s was her longest – eight months. And it was this January that she and the hospital agreed she was fit to leave. “They’d been threading this thing together in me for six years. Both you and your team know when you’re ready.” How did she feel different? “I didn’t feel sad any more, I didn’t feel depressed, I didn’t spend all day terrified, I was able to go out, I was able to have fun, I was able to spend a day not beating the shit out of myself for my flaws.” She is cutting back on her work hours to focus on the essentials – paying bills, keeping the house clean and not being overwhelmed.

She puts out yet another cigarette, prepares to light the next, then stops. “Can I just take a piss?” A minute later she returns. “Wonderful piss,” she says. I ask whether she learned anything about herself from writing the book. “I learned how very, very lucky I was. Coming from where I did, and then to walk around the world having this fantastic adventure. Sometimes I would ring my father, saying something bad had happened to me, and he’d always say that’s part of the adventure, that’s part of life. You know the Harrison Ford movies, he’s always being chased by a boulder or in a pit of snakes, but it’s all part of the adventure? It’s scary, but it’s fun.”

Towards the end of her stay in hospital, she started to appreciate her talent for the first time. When she was planning to tour (before it got cancelled by the pandemic), she worried that she may have forgotten the lyrics to her songs. “So I went on YouTube to remind myself. I had never done that before and I thought, holy shit, that’s me that’s quite good!” Is she thinking of any particular songs? “A lot was about the live performance, like on Jools Holland I did two songs called Fire On Babylon and Famine. I was a skinny young lady and I thought, where did that voice come from?”

Did she think she was beautiful? “When I look back, I think, yeah, that’s a pretty girl. Not any more.” And at the time? “That was never something in my mind. I’m Irish and I grew up in the 70s when to be a good Catholic you had to think you were shit you weren’t allowed to boast, you weren’t allowed to be proud of yourself. You would never declare: I am loving and lovable!”

O’Connor says she was terrified of reading Rememberings: she thought she would find the chapters on her childhood triggering. There came a point when she couldn’t avoid it any longer, because she had to read the audio book. Did she find it tough? “No, the only bit that fucked me up was the Prince chapter. When I read it, I was like, holy fuck, that was a really scary night.”

She was in America in 1991, soon after Nothing Compares 2 U had topped the charts. Although Prince had written the song for his side project, the Family, he’d had nothing to do with her recording. One day she got a call saying he’d like to meet her. A chauffeur-driven car arrived to take her to his house. From the off, she says, Prince acted strangely. He told her he didn’t like the language she used on TV and made it clear he was unhappy she was not his protege. Things soon got tense. She says the evening ended up with him locking her in his house, insisting they have a pillow fight, then hitting her with a hard object hidden inside the pillowcase. O’Connor says she managed to get away and he chased her in his car. Eventually she escaped. She has talked about this night before now, but previously she seemed to laugh it off. Not this time.

What does she think would have happened if Prince had caught her? “I think he would have beat the shit out of me.” Even talking about it after all these years, she looks shaken. What was the scariest moment? “When he was sitting on a chair by the front door and he wouldn’t let me out. His irises dissolved and his eyes just went white. It was the scariest thing I’ve seen in my life.” If he had still been alive, does she think there would have been a #MeToo moment about Prince? There still might be, she says. “I’m interested to see if that does happen because I know one woman he put in hospital for months. And she didn’t make a complaint. I think he was a walking devil. He wasn’t called Prince for nothing.” Did they ever meet after that? “No, I wouldn’t go fucking near him, no way. And he never attempted to meet me. I could have gone to the police and made a report, but I didn’t. I was just so glad to be out of it.”

As well as the traumatic stuff, Rememberings is hilarious at times. Every minute she is falling in love with someone new – invariably a priest or yet another man called John. She describes gleefully how she had never fitted the Catholic template: “Four children by four different men, only one of whom I married, and I married three other men, none of whom are the fathers of my children.” In 2011 she made a call-out on social media for a “sweet sex-starved man”. After a few unsatisfactory responses, Mr Right offered his services, and this resulted in her brief fourth marriage.

With Peter Gabriel in 1991: ‘He had a great tenderness about him.’ Photograph: Michel Linssen/Redferns

She describes the man who took her virginity at 14 as her “deflorist”. She admits she stole the term from her brother, the celebrated novelist Joseph O’Connor. Is she surprised there’s been so much sex in her life? “No, because I was a horndog. I was like every other girl in a band. We all fucked our way around America.”

She stops, and says she has a confession. “To be honest, I exaggerated how slutty I was. I had a couple of affairs on tour with crew members, but I didn’t do my slutty years till I was 49. Then I went on a load of dating sites. I never did any one-night stands before, and then I did the entire slutty college years in six months.” Did she enjoy it? “Oh yeah, I loved dia. But it was time for it to stop.”

There are also honourable – or dishonourable – mentions of celebrity boyfriends. She writes that Peter Gabriel, who was divorced from his first wife when they dated in the early 90s, regarded her as his “weekend pussy”. Did that upset her? “Yes, I was really hurt because he had chased me for about a year as if he was madly in love with me. He was the type of dude who you’d be away with and he’d put a note under the door to tell you he’s just about to go out on a date with another girl. And he’d get you down for the weekend and then say, you know this isn’t going to go any further.” She says, “Because of Peter, I’ve always drilled it into my sons that you must never tell a woman you love her to get her into bed.” She says she doesn’t want to give the wrong impression of Gabriel, though. “To be fair, he also has a great tenderness about him.”

‘Now I’ve had six years on my own, I love it.’ Photograph: Linda Brownlee/The Guardian

Anyway, this is all the past, she insists the hysterectomy has done for her libido. “I don’t even look at policemen’s arses any more,” she says sorrowfully. “I used to look at them a lot especially motorcycle cops. I’d completely objectify them.” A little smile plays across her face. “There has been quite a hot electrician around my house for the last while.” See, I say, there’s still hope. “Well, it’s six years since I either had sex or went out with anybody, and now I’ve had six years on my own, I love it. The thought of having to shave your legs, pluck your eyebrows, hold in your stomach, stick out your arse, always stress, stress.”

While we’re on sex, she’s got a joke for me. “I went to the doctor. He told me to stop wanking. I said, ‘Why?’ and he said, ‘Because I’m trying to examine you.’” She laughs. “I love that joke.”

I ask O’Connor why she thinks she has has had so few hit records. Simple, she says – it’s never been a priority. For her, music has always been a form of therapy. When she did Top Of The Pops, she just regarded it as an opportunity to get “this shit I have to get off my chest”. “The only reason to make an album is because you’ll go crazy if you don’t. If you make it because you want to be famous or impress the fella down the road or to make money, it’s not going to be a good record.”

Having said that, she did earn a fortune from music. “I made 10 million quid on the second album [I Do Not Want What I Haven’t Got] . I probably should have made more. I gave away half of it.” Mengapa? “A priest told me: when you grow up and get a job, pay back the money you stole. So as soon as I got the money, I doled it out in various ways to different charities and people.” That’s not in the book, I say. She looks embarrassed. "Tidak. Because you’re not supposed to say when you’ve done a good deed.”

‘I am born for live performance’: in August 1989, at a gig marking the 20th anniversary of the march on the British embassy in Dublin. Photograph: Independent News and Media/Getty Images

She’s probably still most famous for ripping up the picture of John Paul II. Has that defined her career? “Yes, in a beautiful fucking way. There was no doubt about who this bitch is. There was no more mistaking this woman for a pop star. But it was not derailing people say, ‘Oh, you fucked up your career’ but they’re talking about the career they had in mind for me. I fucked up the house in Antigua that the record company dudes wanted to buy. I fucked up milik mereka career, not mine. It meant I had to make my living playing live, and I am born for live performance.”

Despite everything that has happened to her – the abuse, the breakdowns, the betrayals and fallouts – she has never lost her faith. Yes, she has been hypercritical of formalised religion, particularly the Catholicism she was born into, but that’s different. Religions are simply platforms for faith, she says, and she decided Catholicism was a lousy platform, so she chose Islam. “I guess I was born with a huge faith and it never left and nothing would shake it,” she says.

Why did she become a Muslim? “What I like about Islam is that it is anti-religious. In the same way that Jesus was a militantly anti-religious figure, Allah is saying that people are not to worship anything but God. The worst thing that happened to God is religion.” She means we’ve spent too long worshipping priests rather than God. “Islam is the most maligned religion on Earth because it has the truths that would make you not worship money, make you not steal, make you be good to your brothers and sisters, make you gentle.”

With first husband John Reynolds. Photograph: © John Reynolds

We’ve been chatting for hours, so we call it a night. But over the following days she calls and texts with corrections and additional information. There are new stories about her mother, some horrific, some funny (“One evening some friends of hers called round – she gave them dog food on toast and told them it was paté”). There are reminders of how much she adores her father, her children and two of her ex-husbands. (“My first husband, John Reynolds [who was also her producer], is still my best friend.”) And, most importantly, there are pleas not to misrepresent her. “Don’t make it all misery,” she commands. “Just remember, my story’s not Angela’s fucking Ashes.”

Last time we met it was a period of relative stability in her life. At the end of that interview I asked if she thought her state of calm could be permanent, and she bridled. “People always say to me, ‘Do you think your happiness is going to last?’ as if I’m teetering on some edge,” she said, before telling me it was “bollocks”.

Now she feels differently. She knows things are going well at the moment – she is happy living alone, she’s got a good relationship with her children – but she knows nothing is permanent. “I think I’m good now. But I’m not stupid enough to think I won’t have relapses. I’m not stupid enough to think I won’t end up in hospital again. I’m a recovering abuse survivor and it’s a life’s work. It’s not like you get reborn or something.” She lifts her hijab slightly, showing more of her cropped hair, and she smiles again. For a moment, she looks just like the angelic skinhead of old. “So yeah, I’m always going to be a bit of a crazy bitch, but that’s OK.”


Sinead O'Connor No Longer Alone In Church Protest

In this Oct. 5, 1992, image from video released by NBC, singer Sinead O'Connor tears up a photo of Pope John Paul II during a live appearance on Live Sabtu Malam.

In a 1992 appearance on Saturday Night Live, Sinead O'Connor sang an a cappella version of the Bob Marley song "War," but substituted the word "racism" with "child abuse" in protest of sexual abuse in the Catholic Church. What she did at the end of the song shocked viewers: She held up a picture of Pope John Paul II and ripped it in two.

Eighteen years later, amid continuing revelations of sexual abuse in the Catholic Church, O'Connor's anger is matched by the public worldwide. A Facebook page has even been started called "Apologize to Sinead O'Connor NOW."

O'Connor spoke recently with NPR's Guy Raz about ripping up the photo and how she feels about the church today.

"I'm an intelligent woman. I knew how people would react," she says. "I considered myself a spiritually, intellectually developed woman. . I was perfectly willing to deal with the consequences, the main one of which was people saying I'm a nutcase, which I agree with anyway."

I was perfectly willing to deal with the consequences, the main one of which was people saying I'm a nutcase, which I agree with anyway.

O'Connor says she wasn't looking to be vindicated.

"It's more important to realize that they [the victims] have been vindicated and believed and treated with respect after struggling for, some of them, nearly 40 years, literally, to be recognized," she says.

In spite of her objections to the church's handling of abuse, she says she loves the institution.

"A lot of people misinterpret me and think I'm somehow anti-Catholic, and I'm not," she says. "I've acted out of a passionate love of the Holy Spirit and what is good about Catholicism. . I have nothing but respect for any priest and nun that I've ever met. . They've been disrespected and misrepresented. I think there's so much that's beautiful about Catholicism, but that has been clouded by the cover-up more even than the abuse."

She questions the beliefs of those in the church who would hide abuse: "[It's] as if they don't believe in God. They certainly don't believe in a God that is watching them or what they're doing."

O'Connor says new leadership is needed in the Catholic Church and supports democratic elections for the pope. She says she feels the flurry of abuse revelations over the past few years is just evidence that the Holy Spirit is "doing some serious housekeeping" and exposing the lies.

But she's still hopeful about the future of the institution: "We don't want to throw the baby out with the bath water. There's something beautiful there."


Sinead O’Connor explains why she ripped up photo of the pope on ‘SNL’

After years of speculation, Irish-English musician Sinead O’Connor has finally revealed her rationale behind her infamous incident as a “Saturday Night Live” host in which she destroyed a photo of the Pope. The “Trouble Of The World Singer” dropped the bombshell in her new memoir “Rememberings,” which was excerpted this week by Rolling Stone.

The event occurred in October 1992, when the “Troy” singer shredded a pic of Pope John Paul II on stage while hosting “SNL.” The stunt got the Grammy winner exiled from NBC for life and also booed offstage at a Bob Dylan tribute concert a few weeks later, Rolling Stone reported.

At the time O’Connor, now 54, said she had torn up the photo to protest sexual abuse of children by the Catholic church. However, she recently revealed that the story goes much deeper.

“My intention had always been to destroy my mother’s photo of the pope,” she said. “It represented lies and liars and abuse. The type of people who kept these things were devils like my mother.”

O’Connor said she visited her mother’s home after her death and “took down from her bedroom wall the only photo she ever had up there, which was of Pope John Paul II.”

The performer explained that “it was taken when he visited Ireland in 1979.” She recounted how the Pope had told the”‘young people of Ireland” that he loved them after making a show of kissing the ground at the Dublin airport as if the flight had been “overly frightening.”

She said she kept it with her for years. “I never knew when or where or how I would destroy it, but destroy it I would when the right moment came,” she said.

Prior to her “SNL” appearance, the Irish-English singer had been reading accounts in Irish newspapers about children abused by priests, who later got off scot-free.

The photo-ripping stunt itself was reportedly inspired by a 1978 incident when Bob Geldof tore up a photo of Olivia Newton-John and John Travolta on “Top of the Pops.” The musician was reportedly furious because the duo’s record “Summer Nights” had topped the charts for seven weeks before his hit single “Rat Trap” finally bumped them off.

Almost 30 years on, O’Connor has no regrets over ripping the Pope on camera.

“Everyone wants a pop star, see?” she wrote. “But I am a protest singer. I just had stuff to get off my chest. I had no desire for fame.”

This isn’t the only bombshell the “Black Boys On Mopeds” performer divulged in her memoir. O’Connor spilled the beans on a hellish incident in 1990, when deceased pop icon Prince allegedly threatened to beat the crap out of her in broad daylight, chasing her around his car early one morning on an LA freeway.


25 Years Ago: Sinead O’Connor Tears Up a Photo of the Pope on ‘Saturday Night Live’

In 1992, long before there was a Menyoroti movie, nearly a decade before its scandals became front-page news, Sinead O&aposConnor was fed up with the Catholic church. Angry and frustrated with a culture that irreparably harmed children, she struck the heart of the organization in an unlikely and unexpected way. The Irish singer-songwriter&aposs moment came on Oct. 3 of that year, during her appearance as the musical guest on NBC&aposs Saturday Night Life.

The artist who first came on the scene with the Grammy-nominated 1987 album The Lion and the Cobra performed an a cappella cover of Bob Marley&aposs "War." The track comes from his 1976 album with the Wailers, Rastaman Vibration, which drew its anti-apartheid song&aposs lyrics come from an Oct. 4, 1963 United Nations speech by਎thiopian਎mperor Haile Selassie.

But O&aposConnor਌hanged some of these lyrics to represent the plight of abused youth rather than racial inequality. As she sang about the children, she held up a photo, as she had done in rehearsal. "We have confidence in good over evil," she sang, except where she had previously਋randished an image of orphaned children, she was now holding one of Pope John Paul II —ਊnd tearing it up, tossing its tattered pieces at the camera. "Fight the real enemy," she said defiantly.

The very photo had been on her own mother&aposs wall since 1978, she told the Irish magazine, Hot Press, Menurut Guardian.

The studio was stunned into silence but critics swiftly raised their voices, with NBC receiving approximately 4,400 calls in response to O&aposConnor&aposs actions. Only a handful of the calls were in praise. The network had no prior knowledge of O&aposConnor&aposs plans, but chose not to edit the performance for the delayed West Coast broadcast, although reruns of the episode use O&aposConnor&aposs rehearsal footage instead.

But that O&aposConnor would take a radical stance is itself not unexpected. The artist was on the rise, especially with her 1990 hit Prince cover "Nothing Compares 2 U" off of her second album I Do Not Want What I Haven&apost Got.਋ut her fame was also being fueled by her political pronouncements. In 1989, she announced her support for the Irish Republican Army, before renouncing it the next year. A year later, she refused to perform in New Jersey if the "Star Spangled Banner" were played before the concert began. And in 1991, she refused to accept a Grammy Award for Best Alternative Album, as a protest against the commercialism of the awards show.

The act itself, the form of protest she employed on Saturday Night Life, was inspired by Bob Geldof. She told Hot Press, "When the Boomtown Rats went to No. 1 in England with Rat Trap, [Bob] Geldof went on Top of the Pops and ripped up a photo of John Travolta and Olivia Newton-John, who had been No. 1 for weeks and weeks before. And I thought, &aposYeah, f---! What if someone ripped up a picture of the pope?&apos Half of me was just like: &aposJesus, I&aposd love to just see what&aposd happen.&apos"

A week later as Saturday Night Live&aposs host, Joe Pesci displayed the same tattered photo during his monologue, saying he had taped it back together. He received huge applause. "She&aposs lucky it wasn&apost my show. Cause if it was my show, I would have gave her such a smack," he added.

During an Oct. 16਋ob Dylan tribute at New York City&aposs Madison Square Garden, she witnessed the backlash in person. She took to the stage to perform "I Believe in You," but boos stopped it before she could begin singing. She fought back by singing "War" again, then Kris Kristofferson, the master of ceremonies for the evening, went out and gave her a big hug, telling her "don&apost let the bastards get you down."

Live Sabtu Malam mocked her and Kristofferson&aposs part in the Dylan event later that season.

Kris Kristofferson Stands By Sinead O𠆜onnor

It certainly wasn&apost the only public outcry against her protest. Days after the concert, a 30-ton steamroller in front of Chrysalis Records&apos Rockefeller Center offices crushed an enormous pile of records, cassettes and CDs bearing O&aposConnor&aposs name. The event was put together by the National Ethnic Coalition of Organizers, which promised to donate $10 to charity for every one of her albums sent in. They received more than 200.

"Under our system of government Sinead O&aposConnor has every right to do what she did, but we also have the right to express ourselves," said Arnold Burns, president of the organization, but their plans to send the collection of smashed album bits to O&aposConnor failed when she couldn&apost be located.

Her spokeswoman at the time, Elaine Shock, responded, "How are they going to get it to her? I don&apost even know where she is. It&aposs not like Santa Claus where you can address him in care of the North Pole. It can&apost be &aposSinead O&aposConnor, Europe.&apos"

Around the same time, O&aposConnor sent a letter to dozens of news organizations. "The only reason I ever opened my mouth to sing was so that I tell my story and have it heard," she wrote. "My story is the story of countless millions of children whose families and nations were torn apart in the name of Jesus Christ."

A month after the SNLਊppearance, she further explained herself in an interview with Waktu.

"It&aposs not the man, obviously—it&aposs the office and the symbol of the organization that he represents," she said. "In Ireland we see our people are manifesting the highest incidence in Europe of child abuse. This is a direct result of the fact that they&aposre not in contact with their history as Irish people and the fact that in the schools, the priests have been beating the s--- out of the children for years and sexually abusing them. This is the example that&aposs been set for the people of Ireland. They have been controlled by the church, the very people who authorized what was done to them, who gave permission for what was done to them."

O&aposConnor went on to connect her own childhood abuse to the Catholic church. "Sexual and physical. Psychological. Spiritual. Emotional. Verbal. I went to school every day covered in bruises, boils, sties and face welts, you name it. Nobody ever said a bloody word or did a thing," she said. "Naturally I was very angered by the whole thing, and I had to find out why it happened. The thing that helped me most was the 12-step group, the Adult Children of Alcoholics/Dysfunctional Families. My mother was a Valium addict. What happened to me is a direct result of what happened to my mother and what happened to her in her house and in school."

This was hard to grasp for Americans, who, in 1992, weren&apost as familiar with the abuse of the Catholic church and ensuing cover-ups. But a decade later, in an interview with Salon, O&aposConnor noted, "It&aposs very understandable that the American people did not know what I was going on about, but outside of America, people did really know and it was quite supported and I think very well understood."

On 2005&aposs Throw Down Your Arms, O&aposConnor released a studio version of her take on "War."

Though she has often maintained that she has no regrets about her Live Sabtu Malam performance, in 1997, in an interview with the Italian newspaper Vita, O&aposConnorਊsked the church for forgiveness.


Tonton videonya: Sinead OConnor - War Bob Marley SNL 1992 SUBTITULOS ESPAÑOL