Florence Welch opens up about how sobriety has changed touring: “It’s the people at the shows that save me”

She discussed the struggles of life on the road without alcohol in a new interview

Florence Welch has opened up about how getting sober has affected her feelings about touring.

The Florence + The Machine frontwoman stopped drinking and taking drugs in 2014, something she opened up about while promoting last year’s album, ‘High As Hope’.

In a new interview with ES Magazine, Welch discussed the differences between touring before and after she stopped drinking.


“Most of the things in my life have got exponentially better from not drinking, but it’s lonely being sober on big tours,” she explained. “But really it’s the people at the shows that save me.”

She added that she now finds the beginning of tours difficult and that she goes “into shock” in the first week of a run of dates. “I get really freaked out and wonder how sustainable it is as a way of life,” Welch said. “I can’t sleep and I’m calling my manager, like, ‘I just can’t do this. This is the last one’.

“Then, by the end, I’m in the swing of it. It’s almost like an addictive cycle: the first week is like, ‘Oh my God, no, this is terrifying’. Then at the end, you’re like, ‘I can’t wait to go back and play’.”

The musician also said she had to be cautious about her use of social media while on tour. “The ‘compare and despair’ thing is really difficult, and also the sense that you have to solidify your identity every day,” Welch said. “That’s tricky because I need a lot of quiet time and time not to be exposed or in the spotlight. So every time I post a picture I have a small panic attack.”


In April, Florence + The Machine released a new track, called ‘Jenny Of Oldstones’, which was featured in the final season of Game Of Thrones. The song was played over the closing credits of episode two and followed Podrick Payne singing ‘Jenny’s Song’ by a fire earlier on in the programme, a truncated version of which appears in George R.R. Martin’s A Song of Ice and Fire novels.

Meanwhile, the musician and her band will appear at London’s British Summertime Hyde Park on June 13. The National, Lykke Li, Khruangbin, Blood Orange, and more will also appear on the day.