Reminiscing the old days as a toddler, music speaks to me in many ways possible and I’m proud to say that I grew up the right way being exposed to various genres of music by my old man. The band The Police was one of the many bands I grew up listening to, as I remembered muttering the lyrics to “Roxanne” and singing my heart out to the song in ways I could only imagine.
Sting, a renowned band member from the band itself has worked his way through the marvels of rock on his own, collaborating with various artists from Craig David to Cheb Mami. His music grew over the years as he adapted various form of new age music and created his own identity from it, not shying away from the artist as he started as, both in the band as a solo artist.
People from all corners of the country come together on 13th December 2012 to celebrate a wonderful night, an intimate session with the man himself at the Singapore Indoor Stadium. Gracing our shores, his ‘Back To Bass’ tour is a promising one and kept me at the edge of my seat as I eagerly await him to stand in front of the microphone to kick off what would probably be one of the most memorable moments to say with me through the years to come.
The band members took their places on stage, and the youngest person in the band happens to be the one on the hardest musical instruments known to me yet; a violin and a mandolin. The stage was set for a performance fit for a king as the indoor stadium was filled to the brim with fans from the region, and most certainly set the mood for the night.
The evening began with “If I Ever Lose My Faith In You”, a favourite classic amongst veteran fans, whom upon recognizing the lyrics, stood up and swayed along to the music. Of course, Sting is synonymous with his band The Police and he performed their popular hit “Every Little Thing She Does Is Magic” next, a very poppy, jumpy song that created an erratic wave of moments amongst the audience. I was surprised at how active the older folk in the crowd were; they jolly well knew how to have a good time, and danced their hearts out.
Sting donned skintight leather pants and was clad in a black long sleeved shirt, the latter accentuating his muscular physique. Despite his age, he looked 15 years younger than he really was. He was working his magic on the bass guitar when he performed one of The Police’s epic staples, “Driven To Tears”. The entire band had their fair share of different solos in the song itself but I have to say that I was most blown away by the guitar riffs in this song. That wasn’t all that got my mouth hanging. What was even more remarkable was the fact that the violinist had his own solo and he was literally tearing the stadium apart with what seems to be impossible through the eyes of many to do – a solo on a violin, similar to that on the guitar. Truly indescribable and beyond incredible, the audience went wild with the insane instrumental arrangement and every single one of us just couldn’t get enough of it!
The night slowly transitioned to a mellow and calm ambience as the notes on the acoustic guitar were played, giving a familiar ring to it and immediately gave way to the instantly recognizable tune of “Shape Of My Heart”. Sugababes, the beautiful dynamic British trio, had popularized this track when the ladies sampled its melody for their single, “Shape”. Hearing the song live brought me back to six years ago when the actually song defined me and who I was then; what I was going through. It was such an emotional piece, and sent tears rolling down my cheeks. Not only was the song reminiscent of that phase of my life, it was also the song my late best friend who lost his battle against cancer loved singing to me back then. I felt his presence throughout the performance, as though he was sitting right beside me, enjoying the night. It was truly magical.
As the concert came closer to an end, I was hoping to hear the lyrics “Roxanne, you don’t have to wear that dress tonight” sang by the man himself. True enough, what was anticipated to be the last song of the night was indeed the well-known single, “Roxanne”. The band transposed the song into a slow, a ska-like genre fused with keyboard solos, violin inserts, and impressive guitar riffs as Sting slapped the bass with the beat of the floor toms. He sang “Roxanne” so seductively; I had stars in my eyes! It was such a refreshing change in his set, and song marked the end of the night. The screams and wails from the crowd however, beckoned him to perform an encore.
Lo and behold, we were blessed with not one, but three encores! Never have I been to a concert that had three encore performances; needless to say, this was extraordinary. I was literally blown away by how effortlessly he made his fans feel special, and how he gave them their money’s worth for this concert. Singing right from his heart, the night ended on such a high note, and it was the night when I reflected upon how brilliant he is as a musician.
His age was never an issue, and it would never be a hindrance to his future successes and endeavours. Though he did not perform one of the more popular songs made hip by Glee titled “Don’t Stand So Close To Me”, nonetheless, I was overjoyed and I couldn’t ask for any more of an amazing takeaway from the concert itself. And I have a feeling that I will see myself in his future concerts to come, be it in Singapore or otherwise.