Florence and the Machine are a popular indie rock band that formed in London and has been making an impact on the music landscape since 2007. Founded as a project between collaborators Florence Welch and Isabella Summers, the band has released 4 studio albums each receiving high praise from critics and music fans alike. Here, MusicSnake Magazine put together a list of thirteen interesting facts you probably didn’t know about the band.
Number One: Florence and the Machine is an Inside Joke. When Florence started performing with writing partner Isabella Summers, they used to go by the names Florence Robot and Isa Machine. On her way to a gig, Florence Welch needed a name and immediately thought of this. The singer ended up shortening it to Florence + the Machine, so as not to be so long as to “drive her mad.”
Number Two: Florence’s Style is Influenced by Stevie Nicks. The musician has said that she is obsessed with the way Stevie Nicks dresses, sings and presents herself on stage.
Number Three: Welch Sang at a Famous Friend’s Wedding. Having had one of her songs featured on Gossip Girl, she became friends with the show’s star Blake Lively. They became such good friends that Florence played 3 songs at Lively’s wedding to Ryan Reynolds.
Number Four: The Band’s Leader is Shy. She used to get so nervous that the artist used to drink before going on stage. Welch continued with this ritual until she broke foot at Coachella festival by falling off the stage drunk.
Number Five: Florence Also Used to Play at Funerals. Many children like to perform for their friends and family but she took it to the next level. When the singer was little, she used to be the go-to performer in her family to sing at weddings and funerals.
Number Six: The Band Leader Inspired a Gucci Clothing Line. Gucci has used her as inspiration many times. In both ’11 and ’12, the fashion brand designed costumes for Welch to wear during Florence and the Machine shows. In ’11, Gucci decided to design a whole line inspired by the singer. The models even wore red wigs down the runway.
Number Seven: Florence Collaborated with David Byrne and Fatboy Slim. In ’10, she was asked to sing on an album produced by David Byrne and Fatboy Slim. Titled Here Lies Love, the album is a tribute to Imelda Marcos, politician and wife of former Philippine president Ferdinand Marcos.
Number Eight: The Band Shared the Stage With The Rolling Stones. In ’12, Florence had the opportunity to sing on stage with the Rolling Stones. During the Stones’ five-show run at the O2 Arena, she got to perform “Gimme Shelter” with them.
Number Nine: “Kiss with a Fist” Started as a Different Song. Before starting Florence + the Machine, the singer wrote with another band called Ashok. The band released 1 album together, which featured a song called “Happy Slap.” “Happy Slap” eventually became “Kiss with a Fist,” Florence + the Machine’s first single off their debut album, Lungs.
Number Ten: Payed Tribute to Amy Winehouse. Speaking of tributes, Welch also led a tribute to Amy Winehouse as part of VH1’s Divas Celebrates Soul special. For the occasion, she sang Back to Black, as well as Annie Lennox’s Walking on Broken Glass.
Number Eleven: The Musician’s Stage Appearance is a Disguise. The singer’s appearance is another way she hides. For starters, Welch is not actually a redhead. Naturally a brunette, the artist started dying her hair at the age of twenty, when she first started her career in the industry.
Number Twelve: One Relationship Influenced Two Albums. When Florence wrote the songs for the band’s debut album, Lungs, much of its songs were written about her temporary break-up with boyfriend Stuart Hammond. The two may have gotten back together for a while, but their permanent break-up in ’11 fueled much of her songwriting for Florence + The Machine’s sophomore album, Ceremonials.
Number Thirteen: The Band Leader Lit a Hotel Room on Fire. As the story goes, one drunken night, Florence Welch was having a bad night. Coming back to her hotel room after hanging out with Kanye West and Lykke Li, having already lost her phone, ripped her dress and chipped her tooth, she fell asleep with a tea light still burning. She awoke the next morning to singed walls and a bill costing her “a couple hundred pounds.”
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