Sinéad O'Connor cancels tour due to bipolar struggle
It seemed, as anyone who witnessed one of Sinéad O'Connor's two magnificent sold-out February shows at the El Rey could attest, that the enigmatic artist had put most of her troubles behind her. Though she described herself as "terrified," the 45-year-old O'Connor proved at those shows that her voice was still as pristine as when she stormed the pop charts with her 1987 debut album, "The Lion and the Cobra." Late Monday, however, O'Connor had some disappointing news for fans, revealing that she had canceled her upcoming U.S. tour due to her battles with bipolar disorder.
The statement was posted on her personal website, which at the time of writing is inoperable, as well as her official Facebook page. "With enormous regret I must announce that I have to cancel all touring for the year as am very unwell due to bi polar disorder," read the statement.
O'Connor has been open about her bipolar struggles. She discussed at length the disorder five years ago on "The Oprah Winfrey Show," revealing that she had thoughts of suicide. "The best way I can describe it to you is you're so sad, just terribly sad, that you're like a bucket of water with holes in it," O'Connor told Winfrey. "Every pore of you is crying and you don't even understand why or what."
In her public statement Monday, O'Connor said she suffered a "breakdown between December and March," and she had been advised by her doctors to cancel her tour, which is the one that brought her to Los Angeles. The outing was in support of her recently released album, “How About I Be Me (And You Be You)?”
She said she failed to heed the advice and "didn't want to 'fail' or let anyone down as the tour was already booked to coincide with album release." "So very stupidly," continued the statement, "I ignored his advice to my great detriment, attempting to be stronger than I actually am."
Her May tour was to bring her to the East Coast and Midwest. The outing was due to begin May 12 in Milwaukee, and included dates at Chicago's Park West and New York's Beacon Theatre. The statement on her website differed from the one published on Facebook, and on the former O'Connor stated she still intended to perform at a tribute to Curtis Mayfield set for July at the Lincoln Center in New York.
At the time of posting, a spokesperson for O'Connor did not respond to a request for further information.
O'Connor recently has been in the news more for personal issues than for her music. Last year she began a very public quest for a husband, and married the slightly younger drug counselor Barry Herridge in December, only to split about two weeks later. She has chronicled the marriage, its crumbling, its attempts at reconciliation and her sex life in detail online.
-- Todd Martens
Image: Sinéad O'Connor in Los Angeles earlier this year. Credit: Luis Sinco / Los Angeles Times