The Rock Hall of Famer entertained a sold out show at the Met Philadelphia.
In the middle of a 2-hour set at the Met in Philadelphia Tuesday night, Sting sat on a stool in the middle of stage and talked about hit songs.
“I knew I had a hit song when I was walking along the street and taxi driver was whistling (the Police song) ‘Roxanne,’” Sting told the sold out crowd.
For the most part, the hits was what the first of back-to-back sold out shows by the former Police frontman was all about. Sting, 70, started the show with a rousing edition of “Message in a Bottle” that had the crowd up on it’s feet and singing along and sending out it’s own S.O.S.
Sting was born Gordon Sumner, but he never lost the teenage nickname. He even told and interviewer in the documentary “Bring on the Night:” “My children call me Sting, my mother calls me Sting, who is this Gordon character?”
The show was part of Sting’s “My Songs Tour,’ which began in May 2019, traveled the world and originally ended at the Met in November 2019. Sting was then scheduled to start a Las Vegas residency in March 2020, but was COVID-delayed twice before getting back on stage in November 2021.
By the looks of Tuesday night, though, Sting probably would have stayed on the road for all of the last two years had everything not shut down.
Sting stood in the middle of the stage playing bass for most of the 20 song set, engaged the crowd and opened up with a few of his greatest hits.
He took a break to play songs that weren’t known to many except his most intense fans off his latest album, “The Bridge.”
“I spent the COVID delay writing a lot of songs about love,” Sting told the crowd. “I’ve been in love many times. I’ve had my heart broken. I’ve broken hearts.”
The quieter, more introspective songs still kept most people in their seats, because, well, Sting is still one of the top entertainers in the world.
After that brief respite and a story about his love of television westerns, Sting went back into his trove of danceable, sing-along songs made famous over the last past 41 years.
After the break for new songs, Sting went straight through without a break playing such famous songs as “Wrapped Around Your Finger,” “Walking on the Moon,” “So Lonely” and “Every Breath You Take.”
As many performers his age, Sting has adapted most of his songs to an older voice and a slower stage presence.
He did give a rocking blast-from-the-past extended rendition of the aforementioned “Roxanne.”
“I was told this song has become a college drinking game,” Sting said to the crowd as the he slowed the song down. “Students put on this record and take a shot every time I say Roxanne. Well, for the record, it’s 17 times. Don’t try this at home.”
Sting’s son, Joe Sumner, who opened the show with a set of songs mostly about love lost and falling in love with the wrong people, came on stage for the Police’s 1980 hit “Driven to Tears.”
The show ended much like Sting has done for the past 40 years, with a slower song. This time he brought out the acoustic guitar to play “The Bridge,” the title song from his latest album.
Sting, though, is not slowing down. He will play another show at the Met May 11, and will be in Atlantic City May 13-14 at the Hard Rock Casino. Joe Sumner, meanwhile, will stay around for a bit in Philadelphia for a solo show at Milkboy Philly on May 16.
(c) The Times Herald by Vince Carey