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Florence Rawlings to support Tom Jones on tour

Florence Rawlings

Story by Jack Foley

UP-AND-COMING UK soul star Florence Rawlings is celebrating after being asked to support Welsh legend Tom Jones on his European tour.

The 20-year-old Londoner, whose debut album A Fool In Love is out now, is opening up for the million-selling superstar on the 33-date jaunt, which kicked off in Helsinki on Sunday.

On hearing the thrilling news that she was to perform on the continental tour – her biggest yet to date – hotly-tipped Florence promptly crashed her car.

“I’d just found out that I’d been asked to support Tom Jones on his tour and was driving to see a friend,” she said. “I was so excited and distracted that I drove into the back of a bus and wrote my car off!”

Florence has already enjoyed some high-profile gigs during her young career, including performances at the Isle of Wight Festival, O2 Wireless, Stuttgart Jazz Festival, Guilfest and opening for Booker T in Shepherds Bush.

But this tour, with its 300,000-plus audience, will be her largest yet and, the accident notwithstanding, Florence’s sheer delight is immense – as is her family’s.

“I’ve never been this excited, ever,” she said. “My cousins in Scotland have all his records and were so impressed when I told them. They are going to come and see me at the Glasgow SECC so that will be a really special show.”

Another concert that will have a special significance for Florence is the night of September 26 in Malmo, Sweden.

“On my 21st birthday I’ll be performing in Malmo in front of 15,000 people,” she said. “What an amazing birthday present!”

Florence will be performing songs from debut effort A Fool In Love, a collection of originals and well-chosen covers. Read our review

The tour dates are as follows:

September
20 – Hartwall Helsinki
22 – Stockholm Globe
23 – Oslo Spectrum
25 – Jönköping Kinnarps Arena
26 – Malmo Arena
28 – Horsens Forum Denmark

October
1 – Dusseldorf Philips Halle
3 – Vienna Stadthalle
5 – Frankfurt Alte Oper
6 – Rotterdam Ahoy
7 – Hamburg CCH1
9 – Cardiff CIA
10 – Cardiff CIA
11 – Cardiff CIA
13 – Newcastle Metro Radio Arena
14 – Glasgow Secc
16 – Manchester Evening News Arena
17 – Liverpool Echo Arena
18 – Birmingham LG Arena
20 – Bournemouth BIC
23 – Brighton Centre
24 – London Wembley Arena
26 – Dublin O2 Arena
27 – Belfast Odyssey Arena
29 – Luxembourg \ROC Hal
30 – Antwerp Lotto Arena

November
1 – Milan Teatro Delgi Arcimboldi
3 – Zurich Hallenstadion
6 – Paris Palais De Congress
10 – Prague 02 Arena
11 – Budapest Sports Arena
13 – Belgrade Arena