February 9, 2014
American Airlines Center
Dallas, TX USA
Review by Marco Javier
Photos by Sam McClary
Paul Simon and Sting
Simon & Sting Together, On Tour, With A Gumbo Of Talent
Paul Simon and Sting are two of rock's favorite singer/songwriter musicians played together in Dallas, Texas at the American Airlines Center on the second night of their US tour. When they walked on stage together, they were greeted by a warm Texas crowd by avid fans who wore anticipation on their faces. They were on their feet as the show began.
The two artists started mild and mellow to set the mood of the show. "Miracle and Wonder" was one of the early fan favorites as both artists embraced the Dallas audience with a diversity of songs. Sting's "Field of Gold," "Driven To Tears" and a song he wrote for the late Johnny Cash, "Hung My Head," were early pleasers. Simon's "Mother and Child Reunion," "Me and Julio," and his smooth 70's classic, "50 Ways To Leave You Lover" performed with a cool jazzy touch, were outstanding hits of the show!
I really enjoyed their mixed bag of song selections. They brought an entourage of 14 talented musicians who highlighted the show from the start. Simon and Sting assembled a montage of performers to transition between solo and duet numbers. So much talent, so little time as both Sting and Simon delivered the goods with that hand-picked and very impressive back-up band. It made the show quite enjoyable to watch the connection all the musicians on stage had with one another. With a wide range of musical styles, and change ups to familiar classic's, the show was filled with African beats, Zydeco rhythmic, bluegrass and folk, modern rock to jazz. These cats were having a whole lotta fun! It was a roller coaster of mood changing highs and lows that kept most of the packed house of Baby Boomers alert and some sedated. Actually saw a few people too relaxed in their seat napping during the show. Yep, it happens!
I will not attempt to list all, or even most of the songs played in their 2 hour and 45 minute set. Notable crowd favs like; "Message In The Bottle," "The Boxer," "Kodachrome" and a old standard "Mystery Train" were a few of the high notes. My all time goodie, "Roxanne" really woke them all up, from what I saw!
True story: I saw Sting play "Roxanne" at Reunion Arena, Dallas in 1985. This overjoyed young lady dropped her dress, leaving her with nothing on but her black high heels while standing on her second row center seat. It was such a surprise and a eyeful for Sting that he stopped playing, turned and left the stage, as the local Dallas Police hauled the not so-overjoyed drunken lady away.
The show ended the way it began, with a mellow chill to dance in the aisle. Closing with "Late In The Evening," the entire AAC was on their feet and shaking some part of their body to the groove expressed by that amazing talent on stage, especially Sting and his bass guitar. The house was lit up! Quite brilliant! While trading off the stage, I noticed Paul and Sting had a personal bond easily seen by the numerous hugs they shared. In one of the final songs of the night, "Bridge Over Troubled Water," they performed as a duet with Sting finishing in a powerhouse ending. Whoa! It was INCREDIBLE! I'll be honest, by then I was ready to split until I spotted guitar techs setting up two acoustics front and center. Within moments, Simon and Sting appeared for a final song "When Will I Be Loved," a tribute to their old friend, Phil Everly.
Great tour! Must catch it live!