Things I hate #19

Daniel O’Donnell. Do you know what the ‘O’ stands for? Daniel Ohfuckingnothim’Donnell. If you don’t know who he is, then picture yourself an Irish Cliff Richard. Only even more insincere and with even less ability. And what could be more annoying than that? Come on, think about it; imagine a night with an Irish Cliff Richard. I’ll underline it for you: AN IRISH CLIFF RICHARD. Fix that thought in your mind and put yourself in that front row for two hours at that show and tell me how it feels. Banal middle of the road tripe delivered with a poe-faced self-righteous depreciation of the man who quietly thinks he’s a fucking genius. You’d be killing yourself. You’d be slamming your head into the front apron of the stage just trying to get it all to stop.


O’Donnell turns out sentimental crap with the loving craft of a man singing along to a poor karaoke backing tape in an empty Working Mens’ Club somewhere in the rainy, post-industrial North on a Wednesday night. C’mon, let’s rip it up, lads… She’ll be coming ‘round the mountain when she comes… All delivered in a dead pan, cosy brogue. Ah, but what we be talkin’ in this cursed tongue for when we’ve got the Gaelic? I saw a documentary about him once and the voice over was banging on about how much he loved his fans and how approachable he was. That he was the Irish boy next door with the voice of an angel who had time for a craic with everybody. Grand it was. Cut to some shots of him posing awkwardly with his blue rinsed groupies all waiting in line for a five second audience and a quickly posed snap. I watched it, horribly fascinated by the towering falseness of it all. He comes across has having all the sincerity of a cold calling double glazing salesman. He reminds me of a Medieval Pope; all the right words but without any of the meaning behind them. And being Irish and ostensibly clean cut he is almost canonised, like Dana and Jimmy Cricket before him. ‘Thank y’darrrrrrrrrrlin” I don’t buy it. It was a sales pitch. What a twat. Speaking he didn’t even seem to be in the room. A slow voice and a faraway look in his glassy eyes. Like he was on fucking Tramadol or something. In conversation he reminds me of when I was loaded on Amitryptaline after an operation; every word being pushed out like it weighed a thousand tonnes and when I finally managed to tip it out of my mouth and saw it tumble down into a deep black space it wasn’t quite what I intended to say in the first place and I’d immediately forgotten what I’d just said anyway and the meaning was lost forever, and what was I saying…? Then again some of his fans are genuinely frightening. I think I’d be getting in a Zen like trance and imagining myself somewhere else as well if I were suddenly confronted by some of those worrying individuals. We are talking Kathy Bates in Misery x 1,000,000 to the power of ten. I shiver to think what some of them would do to the poor bastard if he ever fell into their hands. He’d be like a sexual rag doll. Just keep singing ‘The Rose of Tralee’ for me, Daniel, while I try to blow a tune out of this… Oh, dear, I’m not getting any sound from  it, but maybe it’s a bit like the recorder at school, maybe I need to keep this little hole covered at the same time… The pale moon was rising above the green mountaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaains!!!!! And I suppose, in fairness to him, I’d be a bit stand offish if I’d just been smacked in the face by an under-girdle with the gusset all sopping wet from incontinence after getting over excited on hearing his rendition – if it can be called that – of ‘Singing the blues’. Fuck my spats. Daniel with his fans, the cups of tea and the chirpy welcome from the Old Country; like a Furby that’s been indoctrinated by Gay Byrne dressed as a St Patrick’s Day Leprechaun drinking Guinness and eating Soda Bread in every Irish homily and stereotype possible, to be sure, top o’ the morning, begorra. It’s like a hooker offering the full on girlfriend experience. Some women like him in the same way that they like Cliff and Barry Manilow. He’s the bloke you can fancy without there being any danger of him doing anything about it unless you were in total control. He’s a submissive male sex symbol. You’d be taking the lead in that relationship; pull it off and you’d be riding him like Red Rum in the last furlong at Aintree with a sniff of a National win in your nostrils. And he wouldn’t dare complain. He’d just keep smiling while you got your jollies. Maybe sing you ‘I’m a believer’ while you guiltlessly violated him. His persona is a venal trade off to get the cash in the bank. He’s an easy listening whore dressed up as a school girl. I don’t believe in the illusion.


It wouldn’t be so bad if he could sing. He can’t. His voice has the power and range of an asthmatic fart from a sickly, invalid mouse’s arse. There’s nothing there. And if the Germans had won World War 2 I can quite easily see Hitler being a big fan. Tapping his foot to O’Donnell’s middle of the road spaff. It has that sterile healthiness to it that the Nazis and all true spuriously sentimental hypocrites love in their art. There’s even loads of accordion in the mix – which is a dead giveaway. It’s a scene from a Clinton’s Christmas card with smiling one-legged orphans or virginal milk maids who will bear heroes for the Nation set to music.


Hitler: ‘He’s really nailed ‘Peggy Sue’.


Goering [nodding, starting a tentative hand jive]: Better than the decadent American’s original. I like that steady um-pah-pah beat. And he’s smiling!


It’s music that’s fundamentally hypocritical. It apes the form without having anything of the substance. It’s crap. Yeah but his melodies are harmless and even if it is false at least it’s all nice and cosy. You might think. But it’s not harmless, it’s invidious propaganda for a sinister parallel universe where we all smile even though we feel crippled inside but we’re too scared to say anything. He brings pleasure to millions, I hear you object. Yep. And so did Opium smoking but we banned that fucking shit, didn’t we? So why is this twat being allowed to roam around loose pissing on the memory of Buddy Holly? I warn you, if O’Donnell keeps going on like this, before you realize what’s happened you will be standing in line in Wembley Stadium, clapping your hands and singing along to St. Daniel as he wheezes out ‘King of the road’ and then listening to a five hour speech about moral standards and genetic cleanliness from some bloke with a tash in uniform. It’s only a matter of time.


Post script. There was a moment reading back through this when I felt that I was being unfair to O’Donnell. That it’s not him specifically as a person that I despise but rather the carefully crafted persona that he presents in the media and his middle of the road music. After all he seems to love his mother and perhaps the world does need another version of ‘Please release me’. And my Auntie Joan loves him. So he can’t be all bad, surely, I thought. And then I saw this. And I thought, no I’m not wrong. He’s a twat.



  1. luckystar2591 · March 29, 2010

    LOVE IT. The place where I was born is full of little old ladies who scream and throw their tena super every time he comes to town (which is often because he is a cash whore).


  2. deleted user · March 30, 2010

    Apparently his after show parties rival anything Motley Crew got up to back in the day.

    Lines of fawning groupies being taken doggy style over there walking frames, “That’s it Dorothy, now pop your teeth in the sterident, this is the most fun you’ve had since VE day”, mother and daughter combos where the daughter is already drawing the state pension.

    You ever seen the film, “Amazon women on the moon”? This reminds me of the spoof charity appeal…..Listening to BB King imploring, “Did you know that every seven minutes a black person is born in this country without soul?”
    O’Donnell is the Irish equivalent, except it’s not a spoof, it’s horrible reality, red in tooth and claw.

    Unfortunately, at your insistence Guinness, I watched the clip and yes you were right on the money, the guy’s a twat.


  3. GSmudger · April 17, 2010

    Did you ever catch the Father Ted take on O’Donnell in the form of character Eoin McLove in the episode, ‘Night of The Nearly Dead’?

    Just in case you didn’t:

    The extract from the Eoin McLove show 90 seconds in is comedy gold.



  4. Bootneck · May 18, 2010


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