September 20, 2013

Dad wanted me to go to sea... he didn't mean musician on P&O...

It's the early Sixties and to a small boy born Gordon Sumner the giant ship at the end of Gerald Street, Wallsend, looms frighteningly large. The vessel is about five times as high as his home in the row of back-to-back terraced houses stretching down to the northern bank of the Tyne. But the boy, like the rest of his proud community, is dressed in his Sunday best the day the Queen Mother sweeps by in her black Rolls-Royce, flanked by outriders, to launch this huge testament to the hard graft of the Swan Hunter shipyard. "I was standing with my mum holding a Union Jack," he remembers today. "And the Queen Mother waved at me! I felt chosen." That boy grew up to be Sting, the singing superstar who came to recognition in the late Seventies with The Police and journeyed far from home to become An Englishman In New York...

September 19, 2013

Sting: By the Book... from The New York Times

The singer-songwriter, whose album "The Last Ship" will be released this week, says his favorite novels are really extended songs: "What is ‘One Hundred Years of Solitude' if not an opera?" I enjoyed Hilary Mantel's "Bring Up the Bodies," almost as much as I enjoyed its predecessor, "Wolf Hall." Her portrait of Thomas Cromwell is complex and largely sympathetic to a character that is usually cast darkly and exclusively as Henry VIII's "muscle." I enjoyed Nathaniel Philbrick's treatment of the American War of Independence in "Bunker Hill" for similar reasons, a well-researched story proving to be more nuanced and compelling than a well-established myth...

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September 12, 2013

Sting: 'Have you ever heard me complain?' he asks The Guardian...

He happily admits to being a pretentious yogic high-flyer who wound people up with talk of his tantric sex life. Now he's back with his first album in nearly a decade and a musical on Broadway. What a pretentious wanker I am!" shouts Sting loudly. We are on the French Riviera, sitting at a quiet table on the balcony of the house - now a hotel - where F Scott Fitzgerald wrote Tender is the Night, and I have just reminded Sting of a remark he made in 1987. Then a 36-year-old superstar promoting a new album, Nothing Like the Sun, he declared: "I don't want to be a pop star all my life. I'd quite like to be a balding, rotund, Jungian analyst between 40 and 50..."


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September 12, 2013

Taking Himself Out of the Equation - Sting Frees Himself With the Writing of ‘The Last Ship' reports The New York Times...

Early in May, a few hundred people received hush-hush invitations to the Signature Theater in Midtown. They arrived for a staged reading, a spartan workshop production assembled in under 29 hours of rehearsal as a preview for potential backers and other interested parties. On a crowded stage, with scripts in hand, cast members played out a story set in an English town whose shipbuilding industry was in its last throes. The plot intertwines a love triangle, reckonings between fathers and sons and a labor uprising (workers seizing a factory to build a last ship before the factory shuts down) with crosscurrents of economics and faith. The songs bridge show tunes and British folk traditions. The presentation received a standing ovation, something that doesn't always happen at staged readings...

August 25, 2013

Message Unbottled: Sting Conquers Writer's Block With His First New Songs in a Decade... - Sting talks to Vulture.com

A few years ago, Sting found himself in a position that was unique to his experience, though perhaps familiar to certain others: He had grown sick and tired of Sting. For three decades, Sting had been not just one of the world's most famous musicians but one of its preeminent musical confessors: a singer-songwriter who, through all of his incarnations - spiky white reggae man, stadium rock star, sleek fixture of adult­-contemporary radio - had kept the music coming by, he says, "scraping the barrel of my soul." The result was a prolific output: five LPs with the Police and a string of hit solo albums, a run that concluded in 2003 with his eighth solo release, Sacred Love. Then, abruptly, the songs stopped. Sting has released three albums in the years since, all on the classical label Deutsche Grammophon; none were pop records, per se, and none included new songs ­written by Sting. Eventually, he realized he was blocked...


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August 18, 2013

Rolling Stone: Sting Offers Ships and Surprises on First Solo Album In a Decade...

Sting still recalls his earliest memory of growing up near shipyards in northeast England. "A massive ship at the end of my street, towering over the houses and blotting out the sun," he says. "I was raised in this surreal industrial landscape that is still the landscape of my dreams, and some of my nightmares. I watched many ships being launched, and there is something terrifying, apocalyptic and haunting about the event that never leaves you."


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May 15, 2013

Sting's India: from Roxanne to Rajasthan...

The Daily Telegraph's James Collard meets Sting, a rock star, environmental activist and long-time Indophile, in Jodhpur of north-west India, to support the Maharaja's head injuries charity. To find the Grammy-award-winning singer in Jodhpur's Mehrangarh Fort is not entirely surprising. It is no secret that over the years Sting and Trudie have been fascinated by all things Indian - from Hinduism and sitar music to yoga and tantric sex. Sting himself has been coming here for more than three decades, sometimes to celebrate New Year in Goa, sometimes to camp in the Thar Desert outside Jaisalmer, sometimes to join pilgrims visiting the holy headwaters of the Yumuna and Ganges rivers. On occasion he has even brought his two children. "I've been lucky enough to share it with my family, and now my children love it as much as I do," he says...

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October 17, 2012

An Englishman in Chianti - Sting & Trudie feature in FINE the wine magazine...

Having lost his heart to Italy, Sting had resigned himself to the fact that his family was unable to find a suitable home in the country. They had gone on one fruitless exploration after another and there seemed to be no hope. Then Trudie Styler told her husband of a new house up for sale close to the medieval town of Figline Valdarno in Tuscany. To their amazement, Trudie and Sting walked along a cypress-lined avenue right up to the saffron-yellow house of their dreams. They found a home for their family and obtained a farm into the bargain. Its main produce is packed into tens of thousands of bottles each year. When FINE visited Il Palagio for this exclusive interview, the atmosphere at the estate was expectant. The closing lunch of the Divino Tuscany festival, which celebrates winemaking excellence, good music and dear friends, was to be served under marquees on Trudie and Sting's property. With hundreds of guests about to arrive, the host couple still had time to recall the early days of their wine-producing career and the events leading up to their decision to start growing wine...

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