Florence Welch possesses an amazing vocal instrument: the type of voice that commands your attention and then wends its way into the very center of your psyche. When the lyrics of her songs reach you they capture your emotions and sweep you up into the music with her.
I did a brief entry with some biographical notes of her and her music on an earlier post three years ago, but didn’t give her background the attention it deserved, given the imagery in many of her songs. With the release of her most recent single in advance of her upcoming album in June, which she recently admitted in an interview was both personal and difficult to include in the album, it is time to rectfiy that small oversight. It is entitled “Hunger” and sums up the loneliness, and need for love and affection that all of us need–and the safety that these things provide when we find it.
Florence Welch was raised in a home of academics and writers. But life threw her a few curveballs: she was diagnosed as a young woman with having dyxlexia and dysmetria, she witnessed the suicide of her grandmother when she was only 13 year old, and her parents divorced about the same time. Such chaos at a tender age caused her to turn to alchohol, and to engage in other rebellious and potentially self-destructive behavior. But, armed with the natural gift of her voice and growing from being a self-described short, chubby and shy child into a tall, slender woman, she soon found singing to be a haven for her emotions, finding inspiration from both of her talented parents and growing into the person we see today. She was educated at Camberwell College of Arts, but dropped out before graduation to pursue her musical career. Fame caused her to return to alcohol for a while, but she has been very public about overcoming her substance abuse.
Here is her performance of “Hunger” from her live appearance on The Late Show Starring Jimmy Fallon.