The Script’s Danny O’Donoghue says he went ‘off the rails’ after his bandmate Mark died

The Script’s lead singer Danny O’Donoghue has revealed he began smoking and drinking heavily following the death of his bandmate Mark Sheehan in April last year.

Sheehan, 46, was O’Donoghue’s best friend growing up in Dublin where they formed The Script in 2001, with the addition of drummer Glen Power. The guitarist died after a brief illness.

O’Donoghue revealed he gave up cigarettes, alcohol and caffeine at the start of this year.

Speaking on Lorraine in an interview promoting The Script’s upcoming UK tour, O’Donoghue admitted he struggled to write any lyrics for months after Sheehan’s death.

“Around Christmas-time, I went off the rails after Mark passed away. Like everybody does. Drinking, smoking, everything,” he said.

"I went on a mental block - I had a writers’ block for a long time last year."

O’Donoghue said it was only when he came up with the lyric “a shooting star across the sky” did his writer’s block lift and he became able to work on the band’s new material.

The Script co-creators Danny O’Donoghue and Mark Sheehan (Robin Marchant/Getty Images for AWXI)
The Script co-creators Danny O’Donoghue and Mark Sheehan (Robin Marchant/Getty Images for AWXI)

“It was the first time I was really able to articulate what I thought about the situation and the floodgates really opened then, as far as being creative [went],” he said.

“I want to face the grief stone cold sober,” the singer added. “If you don’t, you’re only kicking it down the street.”

Earlier this month, The Script announced their first new album since the death of Sheehan, Satellites, would be released on 16 August.

The Script will embark on a world tour following the release of the album, including ten UK dates beginning in Cardiff on 18 November. Tickets will go on sale on Friday (24 May).

“It’s just really exciting,” O’Donoghue told Lorraine Kelly of the band’s new music. "Heading into summer we have some nice light pop music. It’s just trying to be more uplifting.

“After the year that we’ve had last year, we could do with a bit of positivity,” he said. “It’s a new chapter for The Script moving forwards.”