Rebecca Ferguson @ Liverpool Philharmonic Hall
Liverpool is well known for playing host to a plethora of musical talent: Atomic Kitten, The Wombats and, of course, The Beatles! The city itself is steeped in culture, so it’s no surprise that so much musical talent grows here. With big-name venues such as the Empire Theatre and the Arts Club, offering their stages to both established and emerging artists alike, Liverpool is made for music lovers. So, you can imagine my excitement when I was invited, along with Music Editor Cecily Sheppard, to see Rebecca Ferguson live at the Philharmonic Hall, last Friday.
The weather was pretty miserable, to say the very least, however the excitement in the foyer as the audience made their way into the auditorium was enough to warm me up! The lights dimmed, and following two uplifting, yet stylistically-diverse, support acts – myself and Cecily were both ready to see Ferguson perform.
She made her way on to the stage as her home crowd chanted her name, along with the occasional “g’wan girl” from the stalls above our heads. Ferguson couldn’t hold back her smile, acknowledging friends and family who had come to see her perform. Her opening performance of Oceans, from her exquisitely composed new album Superwoman, set the tone of the entire evening – we were in for a night of beautiful ballads, upbeat numbers and typical ‘Scouse banter’.
She performed a range of songs throughout the evening from each of her albums, which highlighted just how far she has come from her days on ITV’s The X Factor; Backtrack and Nothing’s Real But Love reminded us of how timeless her singles are – years after they were initially released.
But it was the tracks from her new album which stood out for me the most. I had listened to Superwoman about a month ago and, at the time, hadn’t thought much of the songs. Yet, listening to them live has really made me appreciate the quality of the production that has gone into them. Both Stars and Without a Woman have been on repeat on my phone for the past few days – these were huge highlights in the evening for me. Being performed in one of Liverpool’s most iconic venues just made the performances of these tracks even more magical.
Aside from singing, Ferguson was very, very welcoming, almost making the audience feel as if we were sitting in her front room. She would occasionally pause to discuss the importance of being true to yourself and treating your relationships well – an admirable trait for any artist who has been on such a media-driven rollercoaster, such as herself. I left the evening with a sense of pride. Strange – yes. But again, one can only see it admirable for an artist to be able to produce music that truly moves people in this way.
The evening was, on the whole, fantastic. If I had the opportunity, I would definitely go to see her again. Thank you for such a wonderful evening, Rebecca!