Grammy-nominated singer Hozier has opened up about his father's debilitating spinal condition which marked "the watershed of childhood."
The Take Me To Church singer (25), real name Andrew Byrne, said his father John underwent spinal surgery when he was a child and when it failed, John was wheelchair bound for many years.
Hozier features in the new series of Gay Byrne's The Meaning of Life on RTE One and said from the age of six, he was forced to grow up quickly in order to help his family.
"When I was about six or seven he had an operation on his spinal cord which, simply put, didn’t go well," he told the broadcaster.
"That caused irreparable nerve damage. That’s where childhood ends. That was, I suppose, the watershed of childhood.
"It changed all of our lives. It changed his life, it kind of ruined his life in a big way.
"I don’t know how my mum did it. When you’re on morphine the whole time… you’re watching someone you love kind of fade away in many ways.
"It’s an incredibly destructive drug in what it does to the mind and what it does to the body. He was immobile for a long time."
In recent years however, his father's condition has vastly improved thanks to new treatments.
"There was a new treatment only in the last few years," he added.
"It was a different drug, which I think was only on trial at the time. It doesn’t have the doping effects that morphine does, but it still has a similar pain-blocking effect."