A Date with the Shocking Miss Emerald

Last summer I bought myself a birthday gift. A ticket to see Caro Emerald on the weekend before my birthday in March. A Friday night date for just me to celebrate turning 35, seeing one of my favourite artists perform in London. 

Caro proceeded to get pregnant and had to cancel her spring tour. DAMNIT! I received an email shortly after the announcement that the tour would be delayed until the autumn, and would I be able to make the new date. Of course I would, I could wait six more months. 

Therefore, I have now been holding onto this ticket for 15 months ... this was the day I finally got to use it.

Love Life Lexi London o2 Arena

After a quiet Friday at the office, I took myself down to the o2. I've said many times that the o2 is my favourite 'big' venue for music in London - it's laid out well, the staff are fantastic, the venue always looks great and makes whatever is happening inside it sound amazing.

It was a very warm day for mid-October in London, which was nice as that meant I could jazz myself up for jazz gig and not  have to worry about get rained on. Winner. 

Love Life Lexi Alex Marshall

I arrived at the o2 early, after a walk around the avenue and a browse at merchandise I went into the arena. Naturally I gravitated towards the champagne bar ...

Champagne Bar o2 Arena London

That killed an hour, then it was showtime! The support act was Kris Berry and her band:

Kris Berry Caro Emerald o2 London

I'd never heard Kris before, her sound is Caribbean bluesy jazz. I really liked it. I found two albums by her on Spotify the next day, so I'm looking forward to listening to more of her work.

A little while later ... Caro time!

Caro Emerald o2 London
It's hard to take photos whilst dancing

The thing that hits you first is her band, they're incredible and LOUD. I was in the front block in the o2 and I'd forgotten how loud gigs can be when you're at the front. Caro sounded perfect though, just perfect.

I liked that the stage wasn't too over done. The last blues gig I went to was Hugh Laurie & The Copperbottom Band a couple of years ago, and they tried to make the Hammersmith Apollo look shabby chic; lampshades and swirly lights. Caro's stage was minimal, drapes at the back which changed colour with the lighting and some simple illuminated banners.

Within the first 25 minutes I felt like I'd got my money's worth as she sang Riviera Life and Completely but I'd forgotten how many of her songs I like and some sound better live, so there wasn't a slow minute in the evening. She managed to get a relatively sedate audience up and dancing within several songs, it is hard not to dance to her songs though.

She ended with a cover of Dream a Little Dream (which is one of my favourite songs to sing too), telling her tale of how this was the first song she sang to an audience aged 12 and decided then to be a jazz singer. She asked the audience to light the room, and thanks to us all having lights on our smartphones, we did.

Caro Emerald o2 London

And who doesn't love an audience selfie?

Caro Emerald o2 London

She had three fabulous outfits throughout the show, her hair sleeked into a low side pony and impeccable make up.  Caro always looks fantastic but watching her sing live was a wonderful experience.

That show was worth every penny, and given it was £47 for a front block seat in the o2, it was very well priced bunch of pennies too.

Caro's UK tour has now ended, but if jazz is your thing, I can't recommend her shows enough,

I can't resist a bit of tour merch :)

(Shameless plug: Caro keeps an Outfit Diary on Pinterest! I love her style so this is a great board to look at if you like retro fashion ideas.)
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