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I’ve Been Watching Sting!

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Last week, I got the honour to attend a concert I never thought I’d be attending – especially for free! I grew up listening to Sting, both while he was in the band The Police and afterwards, so you can imagine my delight when I found out that Sting was going to hold a concert nearby. Since I’m a fan of his, I couldn’t possibly say no to going to watch him live without paying a lousy coin. After all, it’s stuff like this that makes a blogger like me very, very happy! That being mentioned, let’s put the fan crap aside for a while and get to the review.

It looks like my habit of being extremely early to a concert has become a common trend. In less than 15 minutes after I got myself a good spot at the front 2 hours before the concert, the crowd had quadrupled. You’d think that some people would avoid waiting in the rain for a concert, but it looks like I’m not the only one who can take a bit of water from the sky. Some people didn’t even bother with their umbrellas when the crowd got too thick, which was just as well. The rain kept going on and off like someone’s playing with a faucet during the entire evening. This frightened me a bit, because my camera wasn’t built to resist water. I had to keep wiping it every now and then to prevent it from short-circuiting on me…

When the concert started, it didn’t take long for me to notice how hard it was going to be to take good photos of Sting. He doesn’t move much in front of the microphone and kept his eyes closed most of the time. Thank goodness I’m not a photographer for hire yet, huh?

He doesn't make it easy for me...

Sting sings with feeling instead of eyesight.

It’s always good when singers put some emotion into their vocals. Even amateurs like me can feel every note that comes out of the singer’s mouth that way and with Sting, you could definitely see that he was really giving it all from the bottom of his heart. For every note he played and every word he sang, you couldn’t stop listening and it wasn’t just him. The other musicians and the back-up singer were really hard to miss. Especially the guitar player, Dominic Miller, kept himself so visible, you’d think he tried to steal the show.

This guy almost rocked the stage.

Guitarist Dominic Miller sure likes the spotlight (or possibly just my camera).

Can't believe I spotted him so well...

Pianist David Sancious kept his focus on the keys.

I think he also played the lute, but I couldn't see it...

Peter Tickell rocks along with the violin.

She also danced her way from one side of the stage to the other.

The voice of vocalist Jo Lawry was hard to hear, but her voice made a difference.

He's a quick one!

Sadly, this is the best shot I could get of this speedy drummer, Vinnie Colaiuta, in action.

But there wasn’t just casual singing and music playing. There was some walking about on stage as well and Sting also did some belly-dance-like movements to the song “Desert Rose”.

It took some time to understand that he was singing partially in Arabic...

Sting “belly-dancing” to “Desert Rose”.

Sting wasn’t the only one to move around. Dominic Miller moved around half the stage about 25% of the time, Peter Tickell left his hiding place in the back to do his solos at the front of the stage and Jo Lawry danced her way from one microphone to another on the other side of the stage. They way Sting interacts with the band is quite amazing. I’ve seen performers interact together before, but not like this. If my lip-syncing skills served me right, Sting cheered his bandmembers on like a boxing coach while they were doing their solos, which is something I’ve never seen lead singers do.

This rocky Mozart couldn't ask for a better coach!

Sting cheers on while Peter Tickell plays his solo like a speedy heavy-metalist.

Even the guitar-duets between Dominic Miller and Sting looked like fun! It was so hard to tell if they were duelling or co-operating, but it definitely gave you the feeling that they were enjoying themselves while they went at it. I’m not sure if it’s a duet or Dominic Miller’s solo on the photo below, but Sting looked like he was struggling to get an awesome finish.

I'm not sure if this photo is of a solo or a duet, though...

Duets or solos, Sting looked like he had a hard time keeping up with Dominic Miller’s pace near the finish.

All action aside, I still ended up wishing I filmed the concert instead. For snapshot-shooting, there wasn’t much to catch on film, but I did catch the shot I wanted…

Not bad for an amateur photographer, huh?

My best shot of Sting!

… before the concert ended and everyone on stage gave their bows.

Got'cha, Vinnie!

The performers bowing to the audience and a view of Vinnie Colaiuta’s face in one shot!

But in the end, whoever hired the cameraman in front of me came out the biggest winner of them all…

He failed to block me!

The cameraman who was hired to record the close-up shots in front of the stage.

This concert certainly earned its 5/5. This may have been an ordinary concert with a bucket-load of nostalgia, but the energy and love on stage made up for that. Being there didn’t feel like you were at a concert. Instead you were in a crowd watching six people play for the fun of playing and the joy of music on a stage, like youngsters in a garage. It was pure music and fun. No real showboating, media stunts or any other form of rubbish. That’s how a concert should be. Fanwise, I was also glad to hear my favourite songs from both The Police and Sting’s solo-career on stage and wish I could upload the videos I recorded here without having to pay a coin (can’t afford such luxury yet)… either way, it was an honour to be there and if anyone plans to let me watch something like this again, I’ll say yes before Sting shouts “ROXANNE”!

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