Thrilled Northern Ireland singer Lilla Vargen lands support slot on Dermot Kennedy tour
Northern Ireland singer Lilla Vargen has announced she will be joining Dermot Kennedy as support on his upcoming European tour.
Singer-songwriter Lilla said she is "delighted" to join Kennedy on the two-month run of shows, which includes two gigs at the Eventim Apollo in London and a couple at Dublin's 3Arena.
Ballymena-born Lilla said: "I'm so excited to be out on the road supporting Dermot. He's one of my favourite artists right now and to be able to play to his crowds every evening will be the most incredible experience."
Lilla has been using her new single Why Wait to focus on the issue of homelessness.
The song has been paired with a video of actual homeless people coping with the hardship of life on the streets.
Lilla said: "My family worked with the council helping put together packs for people who were sleeping rough. You see things that are quite hard, but you also learn the most amazing things just from talking to people and they're so glad to have these conversations.
"It's difficult to imagine how hard it must be sitting there on the streets day by day, with everyone avoiding you.
"They needed thousands of items for the homeless or people in vulnerable living conditions, so we were packing up blankets, hats, thermal gloves, thermal underwear - everything you could think of to keep people warm."
Lilla admitted that she was left in tears when she first saw the film footage.
She said: "It shows the most raw form of homelessness and the reality of it, these are real people in that video who really are homeless. It's horrific but it's also really strong and good to be able to say, yes here is something that is a bit scary and it's not very nice, but we have to talk about it."
The self-taught star has loved music since she was a child and would always make up her own songs.
And it was when an ex-boyfriend uploaded some of her songs to a music website that she was spotted by a London talent scout.
That kick-started her career and saw her playing at festivals and grafting until making the leap to move to London full-time after landing publishing and record deals.
She added: "I just really appreciate being able to do this and I'm grateful to be able to do what I love. You just take every opportunity you can, while you can."
Lilla's new single Why Wait is on her EP We Were Thunder. She plays a solo show at McHugh's Bar in Belfast on November 25.