Billy Joel and Sting Kick Off Co-Headlining Tour

Billy Joel  Sting

Last night Billy Joel and Sting kicked off their co-headlining tour at Tampa’s Raymond James Stadium. Sting began the performance by singing “Every Little Thing She Does Is Magic,” before later joining Joel to sing his set-closing hit “Big Man On Mulberry Street”.

A pseudo-Chopin instrumental with an unusual extended metaphor about broken friendships which just doesn’t work. There is a better version on An Innocent Man by Leonard Bernstein.

1. The Lion Sleeps Tonight

After more than three decades without producing a full-length pop album, Piano Man is making his comeback with “Turn the Lights Back On,” out Thursday. Additionally, he’s playing several stadium shows this year alongside Stevie Nicks and Sting, before ending his record 150-show residency at Madison Square Garden this July.

Petco Park on Saturday was buzzing with energy even during a brief rainstorm, when Joel and Sting brought together a sold-out crowd for just one show of Joel and Sting. Their show opened with “Wimoweh,” later revised by George Weiss into The Lion Sleeps Tonight; an explosive Number One hit of 1961 that inspired countless covers over its 30-year run on Billboard charts.

2. New York State of Mind

Sting and Joel kicked off their joint headlining tour at Tampa’s Raymond James Stadium with an electrifying concert, performing an eclectic set of hits by each artist as well as joining each other onstage for several duets.

Joel opened up “New York State of Mind” by singing how some may prefer Miami or Los Angeles for swimming or sunbathing; yet, he always felt proud to call New York home. Richie Cannata provided accompaniment on saxophone; Richie also recorded on Joel’s Turnstiles album.

Sting kicked off his set with a 16-song set that comprised solo material as well as songs from The Police discography. Though Joel would normally join for “Englishman in New York”, Sting instead invited reggae-fusion icon Shaggy onto stage to help finish it.

3. You’re Only Human

Joel’s classic 1985 song has endured for nearly 30 years and earned various honors and covers across genres; yet it remains an unforgettable musical masterpiece with its message about personal forgiveness and optimism in life touching generations to come.

Joel kept the energy high with an eclectic set list, from rock classics such as “King of Pain” to ’80s hits such as “Roxanne.” Photos of Sting were projected onto a screen during a lively rendition of “Message in a Bottle.”

As fans clapped for Sting to come back for “Englishman in New York,” some expected Piano Man to join him onstage – instead, reggae-fusion icon Shaggy appeared and finished off the song! Petco Park audiences absolutely adored him and it made for an unforgettable night of musical fun!

4. The Night Is Still Young

Sting played hits from his solo catalog as well as those by The Police, drawing upon influences such as reggae, jazz and world music to deliver fan favorites like “Roxanne” and “Englishman in New York.” For one song only – 44/876 collaborator Shaggy joined Sting onstage!

Joel proved the big draw, debuting an entirely new song called “Big Man on Mulberry Street”, to great acclaim from the audience.

Petco Park quickly turned into a sea of ponchos after a light drizzle, yet that did not dampen fans’ enthusiasm or prevent them from dancing to live music at this night’s concert. The party was just getting underway!

5. It’s Too Late

At 74, Joel’s voice may no longer match its former glory; yet, he is an amazing showman who knows how to delight a sold-out audience. After singing “We Didn’t Start the Fire,” Sting joined Joel for an encore and rocked out his 1986 hit, “Big Man on Mulberry Street”. Dressed in silver suit and fedora to mimic Sinatra vibe of this tune, both singers harmonized throughout its verses.

“It’s Too Late” may be a love song, but its tone betrays both sadness and resignation. The tune conveys a message about when relationships have run their course and it’s time for both parties involved to move on; at the same time it serves as a reminder that opportunities should never be wasted.