UPDATE: Unfortunately, Avril Lavigne’s s UK and Europe tour has been postponed due to the Coronavirus (COVID-19).
We’re lucky to be living in the era of ’90s/’00s music comeback announcements. Social media went crazy for the long-awaited return of My Chemical Romance, fittingly announced on Halloween. The next day saw the return of Rage Against The Machine.
They weren’t the pioneers, though. Oh no, that title goes to Avril Lavigne who stepped back into the spotlight with a surprise announcement of the Head Above Water World Tour, due to begin in Switzerland in March 2020.
16 European dates were announced. UK fans didn’t have to wait in suspense; we got FOUR dates at surprisingly small venues.
Due to demand – each date sold out swiftly – she’ll was due to appear at O2 Brixton Academy *three* times, as well as a date at O2 Apollo Manchester. Brixton Academy is sub 5,000 capacity and feels smaller, whereas Manchester Apollo is a healthy 3,500. Eager fans will be eager to see the Sk8er Boi/Complicated/Girlfriend superstar when new dates are announced after the threat of COVID-19 has passed.
Wednesday, April 1, 2020: O2 Academy, Brixton
Thursday, April 2, 2020: O2 Apollo, Manchester
Sunday, April 5, 2020: O2 Academy, Brixton
Monday, April 6, 2020: O2 Academy, Brixton
Lavigne will be just as eager to get the tour back on track: “I truly missed being up on stage, singing with you and this has brought me so much happiness.”
£2 from every ticket sale was set to be donated to The Avril Lavigne Foundation. Through programs and grants, it helps people with Lyme Disease and other serious illness and disabilities by providing prevention resources, and funding for treatment and research.
Lavigne knows the vital importance of such support and hope, having been diagnosed with Lyme disease herself. Spread by infected ticks, the disease causes various symptoms such as fatigue, pain, and even nerve and heart damage.
Lavigne explained “I had accepted that I was dying, and I felt in that moment like I was underwater and drowning.” That utter low, and subsequent recovery and return to the live performances she loves so much, explains the name of her single and tour: Head Above Water.
As well as her own hit singles, Lavigne co-wrote Kelly Clarkson’s smash hit Breakaway, and worked with another Music Close-up favourite performer/producer Butch Walker.
If you need any further proof she’s respected by fellow musicians and still relevant, she performed at the prestigious Live At The Vineyard event in Napa Valley, California, recently. She joined other blast-from-the-past names like Jewel and Natasha Beddingfield, as well as the most contemporary of country/commercial crossover stars such as Maren Morris, Kelsea Ballerini, CAM and Maddie and Tae.
It was gratifying to see so many women on the bill as the event played host to industry insiders representing radio programming in the U.S., and lucky radio competition winners. Hopefully we’ll see a sorely needed shift towards more equitable gender balance on the airwaves soon – including Avril Lavigne, of course!