Yesterday on PBS I saw a live special by Sting where he presented the songs from his upcoming musical play, “The Last Ship”.
I’ve always been impressed by Sting’s talent, though I’ve only owned one of his albums, and found a lot of his later work to sound too much alike so that it all jumbles together (admittedly I haven’t paid much attention or studied it at all, so this could easily be a misinformed impression). Suffice it to say that while I have great respect for his talent and work, I’m not a fanboy.
I’m also not a huge fan of musicals, though I admit I’m fond of a handful, (Sound of Music, My Fair Lady, Les Miserables, a perhaps a couple others).
I was struck by Sting’s presentation of these songs. The play is about the region where he grew up, at a shipyard, facing the shutting down of the shipyard. The songs were poignant without being sappy. Sting really seemed to connect to the heartbeat of the common bloke. And there was more diversity in the music than I believe I’ve heard from his efforts, though they’re still identifiable as Stingish, melodically. (I think it’s to his credit that there is a melodic style that’s so obviously his, though perhaps he stole it.)
Just thought I’d share, and would appreciate any comments or criticisms. If the show comes to town, I’ll probably go see it, and if not, no doubt it’ll be on cable eventually.