Shane MacGowan & Sinéad O’Connor Duet Together, Performing a Moving Rendition of “Haunted” (RIP)

We’re tak­ing you on a wist­ful trip down mem­o­ry lane. Above, Shane Mac­Gowan and Sinéad O’Con­nor per­form “Haunt­ed” on the British music show, The White Room. Orig­i­nal­ly record­ed in 1986 with Cait O’Ri­or­dan on vocals, “Haunt­ed” got a sec­ond lease on life in 1995 when Mac­Gowan and O’Con­nor cut a new ver­sion, com­bin­ing her ethe­re­al vocals with his inim­itable song­writ­ing and whiskey-soaked voice. Below, they both appear in an inter­view record­ed dur­ing the same peri­od.

The two Irish musi­cians first met in Lon­don dur­ing the 1980s, start­ing a friend­ship that would have its ups and downs. Their col­lab­o­ra­tion on “Haunt­ed” marked a high point. Then, in 1999, O’Con­nor called the police when she found Mac­Gowan doing hero­in at home. Angered at first, Mac­Gowan lat­er cred­it­ed the inter­ven­tion with help­ing him kick his habit. When Sinéad gave birth to her third child in 2004, she named him Shane, in hon­or of her friend.

Mac­Gowan and O’Con­nor both died this year, just months apart from one anoth­er. As you watch their duet, you can’t help but feel the sand run­ning through the hour­glass. It leaves you feel­ing grate­ful for what we had, and sad for what we have lost. May they rest in peace.

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Open Culture was founded by Dan Colman.