Rebecca Ferguson Wows Full House At Boisdale After Minor Hiccup

Boisdale at Cabot Square, Canary Wharf, is an interesting venue. Set in the middle of the tech and financial district of London, it’s not the first place you think of for live music. It has however proven a boon for those of us who live in South East London, as well as to those who have a need to entertain international clients, in addition to those who just enjoy good music.

Boisdale, Cabot Square. Photo Credit Lisa Hafey
Boisdale, Cabot Square. Photo Credit Lisa Hafey

On Tuesday night I made my third visit to Boisdale, who combine an evening of excellent entertainment with stunningly prepared and presented cuisine, mostly from a Scottish menu, but also featuring fine dining classics such as whole lobster, and oysters.

Rebecca Ferguson and Wendi Harriott, Boisdale, Cabot Square. Photo Credit Lisa Hafey
Rebecca Ferguson and Wendi Harriott, Boisdale, Cabot Square. Photo Credit Lisa Hafey

Music for the night was the wonderful Rebecca Ferguson, ably supported by a three piece band who performed a small jazz instrumental set of their own, and the exquisite Wendi Harriott, who, when Rebecca was delayed by an hour due to transport and traffic problems, stepped in and wowed the audience with an nearly hour long set of jazz and soul standards.

Wendi Harriott, Boisdale, Cabot Square. Photo Credit Lisa Hafey
Wendi Harriott, Boisdale, Cabot Square. Photo Credit Lisa Hafey

Rebecca is brilliant on stage. She has a great patter, telling the audience in her delightful Scouse accent the story of her tumultuous journey to the venue (would you believe the taxi’s wheel just about fell off?), as well as a sumptuous voice, which falls somewhere between Ella Fitzgerald and Billie Holliday, while maintaining an edge of her own. There’s something about her vocal style which surprises the novice listener; it’s a catch, or a rasp, which underlies certain phrasings, and makes her voice quite uniquely suited to sing a range of songs – which she did. Taking her set from her own extensive discography as well as some unusual covers, such as Ed Sheeran’s ‘Shape Of You’, and Stormzy’s ‘Blinded By Your Grace’, there was also a Motown Medley, an incredible cover of Ike and Tina Turner’s ‘Proud Mary’, and Tracy Chapman’s ‘Revolution’. Additionally, Ferguson held sway with her renditions of the Bob Marley classics, ‘Three Little Birds’, and ‘Could You Be Loved’.

Rebecca Ferguson, Boisdale, Cabot Square. Photo Credit Lisa Hafey
Rebecca Ferguson, Boisdale, Cabot Square. Photo Credit Lisa Hafey

From her own songs came some from her debut album, including ‘Heaven’, ‘Glitter & Gold’, and debut single, ‘Nothing’s Real But Love’. My personal favourite was ‘Superwoman’, from the album of the same name, which she preceded by telling the story of how she came to be there that night – taxi wheel and all.

Rebecca Ferguson and Wendi Harriott, Boisdale, Cabot Square. Photo Credit Lisa Hafey
Rebecca Ferguson and Wendi Harriott, Boisdale, Cabot Square. Photo Credit Lisa Hafey

It’s clear the bond between Rebecca and backing vocalist Wendi Harriott goes further than workmates; it was touching to see them chatting between themselves. Harriott said at the start that she’d been friends with Ferguson for years, and it was absolute testimony to their relationship that she was able to stand up in her place, while she was actually feeling quite unwell on the night.

Rebecca Ferguson and Wendi Harriott, Boisdale, Cabot Square. Photo Credit Lisa Hafey
Rebecca Ferguson and Wendi Harriott, Boisdale, Cabot Square. Photo Credit Lisa Hafey

Rebecca Ferguson will be touring in February. See here for tickets and further information.

About the author

Lisa has been writing for over 20 years, starting as the entertainment editor on her university newspaper. Since then she's written for Popwrapped, Maximum Pop, Celebmix, and ListenOnRepeat.

Lisa loves all good music, with particular fondness for Jedward and David Bowie. She's interviewed Edward Grimes (Jedward), Kevin Godley, Trevor Horn, Paul Young, Peter Cox (Go West), Brendan B Brown (Wheatus), Bruce Foxton (The Jam), among many many more. Lisa is also available for freelance writing - please email lisa@essentiallypop.com

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