A Day On The Green: Sirromet 19th February 2023
The whole “A Day on the Green” series has an amazing reputation for delivering awesome outdoor concerts. Over 500 of them actually. Standing in line never sits well with me. Especially concerts. The future reward has to overwhelming out-do the present hassle. Always, it’s a question of balance.
Billed as a Sting concert and yet in my mind – maybe for just a moment – it might morph into a kind of “Summer of Sumners.” Gordon Sumner’s son, Joe, and the legendary Aussie rocker James Reyne were the two support artists.
And speaking of experience, the best run concert seemed to be right in front of us this afternoon on the grassy track to music heaven. Surprisingly, a Pretty Faced wallaby sat curiously as thousands invaded his own particular “Fields of Gold”. You couldn’t get any more Aussie than this.
A smell of freshly cooking pizzas and cut grass permeated the whole happy atmosphere. Honestly, this was a concert promoters dream.
Pumped and sunburnt, 46-year-old Joe Sumner had the tough section of crowd warming. Armed with his Fender Acoustasonic Telecaster – a mysterious cross between a fully-blown electric guitar with the physical carving of a semi acoustic – he engaged the crowd with interesting songs delving into his days with the UK group “Fiction Plane”. He can certainly sing and man, can he play – so he easily engaged with the punters on that lazy afternoon.
If ever there was a male icon from a surfer rock group, acknowledged by almost every decent Aussie, then James Reyne OAM is that bloke. Australian Crawl’s most popular songs came back to life, classics such as “Reckless”, “Beautiful People”, “Errol”, “The Boys Light Up”, “Oh No Not You Again” and “Downhearted”. Just remember, they were voted Countdown’s 1981 Most Popular Group, and James himself, was in ‘80 and in ’81, Most Popular Male Performer. Nothing at all changed. He let us sing. The wine flowed as freely as the words.
This fab Feb day slipped away all too quickly into the evening.
An understandable tension built, not only for the main Star to appear but also for a few random raindrops. Sting, as the consummate Pro, emerged and occupied the stage as he has done for decades. Dressed in either what seems his lucky T-shirt or the local Op-Shop’s B-grade throw out, he carried no airs nor graces – just a grab-bag full of stunning number one hits and a road weary, 1957 Fender bass.
“Message in a Bottle”, “Englishman in New York”, with the stage illuminated in every song. “Everything She Does is Magic”, “If I Lose My Way”, “Fields of Gold” including a wonderful backstory. “Brand New Day” and the list went on. All interspersed with some new and frankly impressive songs.
Although I can’t get his “Magic” out of my mind days later, it stands as the best stamp of approval for this Day on the Green. Magic!
Reviewed by 101FM Radio Presenter Stu Robertson
Photography by Michelle Cop (MC Photography)