The global star next door - Atmospheric in Cologne: Sting finally made it to the cathedral city. The concert should actually have taken place in 2020.
As Sting begins his concert in Cologne, which has been postponed four times, he steps into the limelight of the large hall oval with his bass, this anecdote comes to mind about how Gordon Sumner got his stage name. He is said to have been given it by a fellow musician because he once wore a black and yellow striped sweater and said friend was reminded of a wasp and its stinger - Sting. An unspectacular story that could hardly be more emblematic of the spectacular career of the British international star.
When you think of a stinger, you think of something unpleasant, painful, something that pierces your skin and shoots poison. And when a musician calls himself Sting, it's probably because he's a mangy streetwalker, someone with rough edges, a rock star with attitude and the frustrations that go with it. And at 70 he looks like a cross between Keith Richards and Ozzy Osbourne. But with that same Sting, this sporty, wiry normal guy with jeans, a T-shirt and a standard short haircut, things are different. Anyone looking for a career full of scandals will look in vain.
And so the appearance in the cathedral city is strikingly unpretentious. The stage exudes an intimate setting, a mixture of a small theater and a blues cellar. Sting shares the boards with his three-piece band, harmonica player Shane Sager, a backing singer and a backing singer. A special guest is singer Gregory Porter, who will appear in Düsseldorf the next day and will perform his song “It’s Probably Me” accompanied by Sting on bass. Later, Sting gets vocal support for “King of Pain” from his eldest son Joe Sumner, who was already the opening act.
Jazzy, bluesy, funky, interspersed with reggae and rock, garnished with ethno vibes and world music, sometimes ballad-like, sometimes with his foot on the accelerator: as part of his “My Songs” tour, the 72-year-old Englishman condenses the songs he wrote Music history in a program lasting around two hours. Sting won 17 Grammys with The Police and as a solo artist - and all of that without poses, antics or provocations. The approximately 15,000 listeners in the sold-out Lanxess Arena will hear a large part of the award-winning songs, but even more.
The almost tenderly orchestrated and grandiose “Fields of Gold” is one of the highlights of the evening, as is “Why Should I Cry for You?”. “Shape of My Heart” is performed by Sting, and at the end there is also an acoustic version of “Fragile”, for which the musician swaps the bass for a guitar and sits on a stool. The hall listens spellbound while they go completely crazy during the police number “So Lonely” and no one can stay in the seats of the completely seated arena. “Message in a Bottle”, “Every Breath You Take” and “Roxanne” guarantee happy faces.
Sting smiles and says thank you in German, bows, waves and leaves. No fireworks, no confetti. Did anyone expect anything different?
(c) Aachener Zeitung by Tim Griese
Sting sings with his son - Even at 72 years old, Sting still has enough power to fill large halls...
Glitter, glamor and bling bling – that’s not Sting’s thing…
It is 8:45 p.m. when Gordon Matthew Thomas Sumner takes the stage at the Lanxess Arena in Cologne on Monday. He wears black skinny jeans and a very tight, gray shirt that shows off his muscles particularly well. How old is Sting again? Oh yes, 72 – you can’t see it...
With his first song, “Message in a Bottle”, he has already won over the almost sold-out hall. Nobody is angry with him: The Brit had to postpone his “Sting My Song” tour four times: Corona and illness played against him.
After “English Man in New York,” the singer speaks to the audience for the first time – in German! “Welcome ladies and gentlemen. Sorry it took so long. You've had your ticket for a long time. But we’re still alive!”
Sting laughs and continues to hit his bass, which he will hardly put down all evening. Hits like “Fields of Gold” provide emotional moments.
One of the highlights - Sting announces: "There's now a treat for you and for me!" Soul singer Gregory Porter (52) comes on stage and performs "It's probably me" with the star! Craziness!
Not only is Sting himself incredibly good, but also his background singers, who could fill halls with their magnificent voices alone. He always gives them space to reveal their sensational talent to the Cologne audience.
Even before the actual concert begins, it is clear: this evening will be a family celebration. His eldest son Joe Sumner (47) appears as the opening act. He – the image of his famous father – is already heating up the hall. And: Daddy brings his son back on stage for the last songs. They end the concert together.
The global star only performs the last encores – including Sting’s hit “Roxanne” – alone. The Sting concert lasts about two hours - and it was really worth the long wait.
(C) Image by Nina Stampflmeier