Russell Baillie

Russell Baillie is the Herald’s entertainment editor

Paul Simon's NZ show has Sting to it

Paul Simon and Sting head to New Zealand in January 2015.
Paul Simon and Sting head to New Zealand in January 2015.

Paul Simon is returning for a third time to Vector Arena in six years and he's bringing a musical mate - but no, it's not Art Garfunkel.

Simon's performing partner on the seven date Australasian tour which starts in Auckland on Saturday January 30 will be Sting, the English former frontman of the Police and veteran solo star.

Simon, who turns 73 in October and Sting, who will be 63 the same month, might not seem to have much musical common ground. But reviews for early American dates on the imaginatively-named On Stage Together tour have been glowing.

The musicians play with a combo of the backing bands of each - described as "a small army of world-class musicians" by one critic - and play separate sets as well as duets from their respective songbooks.

Both share histories of being musical explorers - Simon most famously on his classic South African-recorded Graceland album while Sting's post-Police career has veered from jazz excursions to Hollywood theme songs to a lute album of Renaissance songs.

Both have been in the headlines for things other than music too recently.

Simon and wife Edie Brickell were arrested on a charge of disorderly conduct - the charges were later dropped - after a domestic incident in April at their Connecticut home.

Sting was in the news last week for saying he won't be passing on his vast fortune to his six children, saying he didn't want "to leave them trust funds that are albatrosses round their necks".

Tickets for the Vector Arena show go on general sale next Monday, 10am with various pre-sales on offer from Thursday.

In other tour news, prog-rock band Yes is returning to New Zealand to play two of their heyday albums Fragile and Close to the Edge in their entireity.

The band last performed in NZ at Vector Arena in 2012. This time, their show is at the Aotea Centre's ASB Theatre where they will perform on November 10.

Fragile from 1971 sold more than two million copies in its day. Close to the Edge from a year later was a three-song album featuring the epic 18-minute title track on side one and And You And I and Siberian Khatru taking up all of side two.

It sold more than a million copies.

The current line-up of Yes is Chris Squire, Steve Howe, Alan White, Geoff Downes and recent addition, singer Jon Davison who joined the band in 2012.

- NZ Herald

© Copyright 2014, APN New Zealand Limited

Assembled by: (static) on production apcf05 at 27 Nov 2014 04:13:12 Processing Time: 554ms