Selected by Dan Grunebaum



It' been a year since Sting released his most recent album Brand New Day, but now that his extensive North American summer tour is over, fans in Japan will soon be graced by His Presence. Kanto area engagements include two already sold-out dates at Pacifico Yokohama and Budokan, and a recently added extra Budokan date.

Hard to believe it, but almost 20 years have gone by since Sting (born Gordon Sumner) launched his solo career. Thereafter, the Englishman has released a dozen or so albums, culminating in last September's Brand New Day.

Brand New Day didn't win any praise from Police fans, but let's face it - with Sting fast approaching his fiftieth birthday, it's a bit much to hope for the innovation of his early days. Instead, with Brand New Day, Sting delivered pretty much what he's been delivering for years now: superbly executed, super-smooth adult contemporary music. And on that count, he is an acknowledged master.

Providing some melodic moments with guests James Taylor and Stevie Wonder, Sting told Guitarworld that he also used Brand New Day to explore his interest in "perverting rock and roll into as many different colors and hybrids as [he] can." "Desert Rose," for instance, evokes the Middle East, while "Fill Her Up" is Sting's attempt at country music.

Brand New Day and his previous album Mercury Falling didn't pack the punch of Sting's finest solo release, 1993's Ten Summoner's Tales. But, as evidenced by how quickly his shows have sold out, Sting remains a heavyweight concert draw.

Sting always teams up with the best sidemen to put on a highly professional show. And who knows-with a bit of luck, he may even dust off some of his old Police numbers. "It's my job to sing every song we do as if it was written yesterday," he says on his website, "and to breathe new life into it."

Sting plays Pacifico Yokohama on October 14 and Budokan on October 16, 25 & 26. See listings for details.

Concert Listings
394: Regurgitator
393: Art Garfunkel


392: Belle and Sebastian
391: Super Furry Animals
390: Ben Folds
389: Elton John
388: Dido
387: Papa Roach
386: Beast Feast 2001
385: Summersonic
384: David Sylvian
383: Maxi Priest & Big Mountain
382: Fuji Rock Festival 01
381: Roxy Music
380: Bo Diddley
379: John McLaughlin & Zakir Hussain in Remember Shakti
378: Paul Weller
377: Coolio
376: Backyard Babies
375: Marcus Miller
374: Black Crowes
373: Megadeath
372: Dionne Warwick
371: Arrested Development
370: Mouse on Mars
369: Duran Duran
368: Linkin Park
367: Maceo Parker
366: Japan Blues Carnival 2001
365: Ben Harper
364: Cheap Trick
363: Stephen Malkmus
362: Mogwai
361: Weezer
360: Marilyn Manson
359: Green Day
358: AC/DC
357: Richard Thompson
356: Bob Dylan
355: J. Mascis
354: Leigh Stephen Kenny
352/3: Limp Bizkit
351: Boyz II Men
350: Reef
349: Park Tower Blues Festival
348: Roni Size
347: Compay Segundo
346: Incognito
345: Jimmy Page and The Black Crowes
344: Bad Religion
343: Japan Soul Festival 2000
342: Rocktober 2000
341: Richard Ashcroft
340: Motorhead
339: Festival Halou
338: Ricky Martin
337: Taj Mahal
336: Asian Dub Foundation
335: Lou Reed
334: Earth, Wind & Fire
333: Sting
332: No Doubt
331: Camel
330: Fuji Rock: Smash Talks
329: Summer Sonic
328: Mt. Fuju Aid 2000
327: Salif Keita
326: Buena Vista Social Club
325: Bill Frisell
324: Maxi Priest
323: Lenine
322: Rage Against the Machine
321: Tommy Flanagan Trio
320: Smashing Pumpkins
319: Pet Shop Boys
318: Japan Blues Carnival
317: Gipsy Kings
316: Steely Dan
315: Pshish
314: Big Night Out
313: Femi Kuti and the Positive Force
312: Harry Connick Jr.
311: Sonny Rollins
310: Speech
309: Santana