Sting, Cobo Arena, March 14, 1991

12 02 2009

In the late 80’s, I really started getting heavy into the Police. I loved them in the early 80’s, but I didn’t have the money to buy their stuff; I taped them from the radio when possible.

Sting put out Dream of the Blue Turtles and Nothing Like the Sun, two albums which meant virtually nothing to me. When they were released, to my ear at the time, those album weres too mellow. Even now, those are damned good albums but they seem a bit pretentious; Sting masquerading as a jazz musician.

Sting’s third solo album, Soul Cages, was released in January 1991, while in was in college. By that time, I was moving away from hard rock as my primary source of music, exploring other styles. Soul Cages worked for me immediately. I thought it was great, played it over and over and just had to see Sting when he came to town.

I got a chance on March 14, 1991, when he brought his band to Cobo Arena in Detroit. I went with some friends but we couldn’t get tickets together, so I sat by myself…in the second row! It was a great show and I had a great time. It turned me into a huge Sting fan for the next few years.

I thought I was clever in sneaking in my $25 point-and-shoot camera. I got some shots which, at the time, seemed great. They’re quite lousy, actually, but I’m glad to have them nevertheless.

A few things stand out about the show. Concrete Blonde opened. They were an up-and-coming band at the time. Vinx, who probably would’ve never gone anywhere professionally had Sting not pulled him out of the clubs, sang, “I’m Dreaming of a White…” wait for it… “girlfriend.” The whites in the audience loved it.

Sting and his band were great. They played Soul Cages album to the note and threw in a few Police and earlier Sting songs.

The moment that most stands out is when the spotlight went on a pair of fans that held up a sign that read, “We Know You’re 39!” Sting read it out loud, crinkled his nose and said, “Who gives a fuck?” It did seem like an odd thing to put on a sign, after all.

I saw Sting probably 2 more times. That show was fun if for no other reasons than I sat so close and got some pictures.




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