Florence Rawlings
 
Hard To Get
 Love Can Be A Battlefield
 
 
 

Described as a “blue eyed soul singer set for big things” by Mojo Magazine, Florence Rawlings first impressed Dramatico Records chairman Mike Batt at the age of just thirteen when she performed at his house after hearing he was looking for female singers to sign to his label Dramatico. Two of the young singing applicants stood out to Batt immediately, one being a certain Katie Melua and the other Florence Rawlings. With Florence still so young, it was agreed that she should concentrate on school and finish her studies. Even then, whilst the majority of young teenagers were just being introduced to the real world, Florence sang with a heart and core that suggested she knew it inside out.

Attending music camps and studying the art of singing since childhood, (“I’d sing for whoever was willing to listen…at school, in clubs and bars…anywhere I could”), whilst getting wrapped up in old soul records, the only thing as big as Florence’s love of music was her voice. With a remarkably fresh but mature delivery Florence’s enormous voice swoops and soars through an impressive vocal range taking inspiration and style from legendary vocalists such as Aretha Franklin, Eva Cassidy and Martha Reeves.

On completing her A level exams Florence signed to Dramatico (Katie Melua, Marianne Faithfull, Carla Bruni, Gurrumul) and put those years of musical apprenticeship to good use recording, with Mike Batt, her debut album ‘A Fool In Love’. An impressive debut of authentic soul, raw grooves and rhythm & blues the album was described by Music Week as “a blend that could elevate her to the similar heady heights Melua enjoys. Classy stuff.”

Florence's greatest asset is her mature vocal delivery and matched with a collection of original songs as well as some well-chosen classic but lesser-known soul moments 'A Fool In Love' is poised to be a breakout album for 2010. Recorded with a live rhythm section, the album possesses an undoubted soulful authenticity that Florence makes her trademark as she follows in the footsteps of her heroes and inspirations Gladys Knight, Macy Gray and Alicia Keys. The record “showcases Flo as a highly impressive UK soulster” according to the Daily Mirror and was declared Radio 2’s ‘Album Of The Week’.

Equally at home in the studio or in concert, the 21 year-old Londoner is a natural performer – as was evident when she took to the stage at 2009’s Isle of Wight Festival and stunned the crowds when she performed her songs for the first time. Afterwards the festival’s promoter John Giddings declared “Florence Rawlings rocked the Big Top - a certain star of the future” and other festival promoters were extraordinarily quick off the mark in booking Florence, before a note of music was even released, for some key spots including the main stage at Guilfest and Tuborg Stage at O2 Wireless in Hyde Park. Florence was subsequently invited by Tom Jones to be his special guest on his European tour in October and November 2009 during which she performed to 300,000 people, including 12 arena shows in Britain.

In February Florence brought her soulful take on rock and blues to the cosy, decadent surroundings of Bush Hall in Shepherds Bush, showing us Hello Magazine’s “Rising Star of 2010” at her most intimate. The passion for music has always been in Florence's bones - "I started singing when I was 4, and haven't stopped since" - and anyone who has seen her live performance would agree the hard work has definitely paid off. She was wowing audiences and festival organizers before a note of music had even been released.

"'A Fool In Love' (is) a classy piece of work...(with an) astonishingly mature voice at its centre" The Singer

"Highly impressive UK soulster" Daily Mirror

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