Kate Bush and Hozier share emotional tributes to Sinéad O’Connor: ‘A light has gone out’

An image consisting of three photos, one of Hozier, one of Sinead O'Connor, one of Kate bush.

Kate Bush and Hozier have paid heartfelt tributes to fellow singer-songwriter Sinéad O’Connor following her death at the age of 56.

Yesterday (27 July), O’Connor’s family announced “with great sadness” that the “Nothing Compares 2 U” singer had died, writing in a statement that they were “devastated” at her passing.

Police have since revealed that O’Connor was found unresponsive at her home in London at 11:18am on 27 July, and her death is not being treated as suspicious.

The entertainment world has collectively paid tribute to O’Connor, celebrating not only her extensive, award-winning discography, but her fearless commitment to standing up for what she felt was right.

Sinéad O'Connor performing at Glastonbury in 1991.
Sinéad O’Connor performing at Glastonbury in 1991. (Getty)

In a rare post on her website, British music icon and “Running Up That Hill” singer Kate Bush wrote that the world had lost a “magical presence”.

“It’s like a light has gone out, hasn’t it? A beacon on a high mountain. Sinéad didn’t just move us with her incredibly emotive voice, she stood up with it”, wrote Bush.

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“I salute her. We were lucky to have such a magical presence move among us.”

Kate Bush with red hair, in a lilac leotard
Kate Bush. (YouTube)

O’Connor’s fellow Irish musician and “Take Me To Church” singer Hozier reflected on the musician’s legacy in a poignant moment during a concert in Northern Ireland last night.

“It’s very, very hard to quantify. Her courage and her honesty and the truth that she spoke cost her a great deal,” Hozier told the crowd.

“I stand here as an artist who walks on the roads that she paved, at great cost, and paved with the brilliance of her heart.”

Hozier wearing a white shirt and grey cardigan against a white and black background.
Hozier. (Getty/Jason Mendez)

Sinéad O’Connor released ten studio albums, bagged a number one single and even won a Grammy – which she refused to accept – over the course of her storied career, but many appreciated her first and foremost for her unapologetically outspoken political and social views.

In particular, many remember her for her bold decision to tear up a photo of Pope John Paul II during a performance on Saturday Night Live in 1992. It was an act of protest against the sexual abuse of children within the Catholic Church, with O’Connor staring into the camera during the performance and urging viewers to “fight the real enemy”.

Hozier, who identifies as agnostic, has on several occasions voiced his own discontentment with the Catholic Church. 

Speaking on Larry King Now back in 2015, he slammed the “hypocrisy” of the church when it came to its views on homosexuality.

“This is one of the paradoxes and weird hypocrisy of that organisation,” he said. “The Pope came here last year and said, “Who am I to judge with regards to somebody’s sexual orientation?” … I think it is important to differentiate between lip service towards something and actually making change.

“I think it is hopeful, but saying this in 2015, “Who am I to judge?” is something that should have been said 100 years ago.”