Rebecca Ferguson first came into the public eye as the runner up on 2010’s season of The X-Factor and following the release of a barnstorming first album has become a staple of the British and American music scenes and is represented by a London music agent.
The singer was asked to perform at the controversial president’s inauguration on January 20th, but tweeted that she would only be singing if she could perform Billie Holiday’s classic Strange Fruit.
It was a pointed gesture by Rebecca Ferguson, who confirmed just a week beforehand that she would not be singing, saying: “I wasn’t comfortable with the song choice made on my behalf, and although I’m very blessed to have a gift that gives me amazing opportunities, as a mother and an artist, I had to defend my stance.
“That is why I made the decision to sing Strange Fruit when I was invited.
“I requested to sing Strange Fruit as I felt it was the only song that would not compromise my artistic integrity and also as somebody who has a lot of love for all people, but has a special empathy as well for African American people and the #blacklivesmatter movement, I wanted to create a moment of pause for people to reflect.”