Back to bass-ics


Nationality: UK

Genre: Rock, pop, new age


Gordon Sumner made his name, of course, as bassist and lead singer of The Police, and has since gone on to have almost as most success, and even more critical acclaim, as a solo artist. The boy picks up awards left, right and centre and as an activist and philanthropist has become one of the all-round good guys of the music industry.

I remember getting his much hyped The Dream of the Blue Turtles in 1985. I didn’t buy it, I taped it off somebody. See, you modern downloaders who think you’re so clever, we were doing exactly the same thing back in the eighties, just that with each subsequent copy, the quality got worse and worse. It got the Grammy for album of the year, but I was anything but impressed, and probably used the same C90 to tape something like Bon Jovi’s Slippery When Wet over it.

Between 1991 and 2003, Sting released six more albums, all of which went platinum or better on both sides of the Atlantic, and saw the Newcastle United fan drift further and further away from the old Police sound into the realms of new wave, new age, jazz, soul, world music, Celtic and classical – sometimes quite rightly being slammed as a pretentious old git tackling genres that are best left to people that know what they’re doing with them. But the critics seem to love everything he does, and the fans lap it all up. Anything Sting does is lauded as the work of a genius, even when the ultimate listening experience is not all that much more entertaining than the droning of a washing machine.

Last July he completed a one-year world tour on the back of his Symphonicities album, in which both Police and solo material was set to an orchestral background. Now he’s going Back to Bass, as he goes back over the last 25 years of his life, which all ties in nicely with the release of a box set of his assorted ,musical accomplishments. The idea is that these are ‘stripped down’ versions, mainly of his solo stuff, but with a few Police hits thrown in too. And although he’s now gone 60, he can still belt out a tune, and although he’s turned out some trash over the years, when you just focus on the best bits, there’s barely a duff song to be heard.

For the time being, there have been no Sting shows announced on the mainland. He’s limiting his appearances to the inaugural Ibiza 123 Festival and a show in Tenerife. The latter is a big deal to the guys who secured the Geordie’s services, who are keen to get Santa Cruz “back on the map of places where large concerts are held.” Not a bad effort, and the first 5,000 tickets sold in just ten hours, but I bet they’re miffed that Las Palmas went one better and got Bruce Springsteen…

Did you know: Sting and four fellow musicians had the audacity to take on Gary Kasparov at chess in 1950. All five were beaten in less than 50 minutes.


Saturday June 30, 2012 Santa Cruz de Tenerife Heliodoro Rodríguez López

Sunday July 1 to Tuesday July 3, 2012 San Antonio Ibiza 123 Festival GET TICKETS HERE


1.  All This Time

2.  Every Little Thing She Does Is Magic

3.  Seven Days

4.  Demolition Man

5.  I Hung My Head

6.  I’m So Happy I Can’t Stop Crying

7.  Stolen Car (Take Me Dancing)

8.  Driven to Tears

9.  Fortress Around Your Heart

10.  Fields of Gold

11.  Sacred Love

12.  Ghost Story

13.  Heavy Cloud No Rain

14.  Inside

15.  Love Is Stronger Than Justice (The Munificent Seven)

16.  The Hounds of Winter

17.  The End of the Game

18.  Never Coming Home

Encore:  19.  Desert Rose

20.  Every Breath You Take

21.  Next to You

22.  Message in a Bottle


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