September 11th, 2001 A beautiful tribute to the victims
Ernest A. Martinez | Beverly Hills, CA | 12/16/2001
(5 out of 5 stars)
"I pre-ordered the DVD before it came out because I saw the show on A&E. The most remarkable part of the DVD is the sound. During the concert you feel like you are sitting in Tuscany with a glass of Chianti and listening to Sting perform at his house. I own at least 10 other DVD live concerts and this is by far the best sound quality. The documentary part is fascinating because during the rehearsals Sting could not have anticipated what was going to happen right before the show. The rehearsal sessions are excellent as you watch the musicians work through the songs. Then on September 11th Sting must make an excruciating decision on whether to perform the concert. In the end he changes the song list to reflect the emotional moment and the result is an emotionally charged performance that cannot be duplicated. Fragile is appropriatly the first song. Obviously, I would have liked to see some of the lighter songs, but under the circumstances it was amazing that they were able to perform at all."
STING IS AN ARTIST IN THE TRUEST SENSE
Soaring Heart | 05/13/2002
(5 out of 5 stars)
"This review has been locked up in my heart for a long time. It is one of those enormously emotional products I love that I feel inadequate to review; however, that is the best reason for reviewing it. I believe most people know that this concert was held in Sting's home in Italy, that he and his gifted band had been practicing for less than 2 weeks and that they had to decide whether to go on and do the show knowing of the horrific events of that day (September 11, 2001.) Besides the music, their discussion of this decision is one of the highlights of this DVD. "Fragile," dedicated to the victims is the opening song and it is played and sung PERFECTLY with tenderness, respect and musical brilliance. The entire DVD sound and picture quality is second to none I've ever seen, the songs are slightly different than we've heard them (more jazzy/bluesy) and it is a change that shows how much Sting has grown as an person, not just an artist. The band he has put together is entirely and impressively gifted, coming from around the world--Brazil, Argentina, Algeria, France, England, North America and more. Each one adds to the magical eclecticism of the music and atmosphere. They comprise an entertaining and interesting group of musicians to watch AND listen to.I have always respected Sting but never so much than after seeing this. The DVD is absolutely flawless. I can't give a higher recommendation. This is my highest recommendation. On a 1-10 scale with 1 the worst and 10 the best. This tops even a ten. There are really no words to express all of my feelings. STING...ALL THIS TIME must be EXPERIENCED. Whether or not you are a fan of Sting is irrelevant, because AFTER you watch this you WILL BE.It has one of the best menus I've ever seen with loads of options: to play the documentary, the concert or both at the same time with a feature to hit "S" (enter) after each practiced song (that was chosen to use in the concert--obviously in keeping respect for the ones that had lost their lives, many tunes were omitted in the concert that are on the warmup/practice/jam sessions. Which are, by the way, enjoyable to watch.) What I want to emphasize the most is the way Sting starts off somber and respectful and ends up letting himself go inside the music whichs floods his soul with JOY, which, in turn, the rapport between him and his band sets up a chain reaction that fills everyone playing and listening with JOY. THAT, my friends, is what Music is all About. This is so inspiring to me and I believe it will be to you too.Sting said it best, "You know, we were all put on this earth to be happy. We all deserve to be happy. They can't kill our joy. We can't let them do that."KEEP SMILIN' AND SOAR!
The Tao of Sting
Darren | Jersey Shore, NJ USA | 01/06/2003
(5 out of 5 stars)
"It's a ten day international slumber party and week of brainstorming and rehearsing at Sting's place! The documentary portion starts with the international musicians arriving to Sting's Italian villa in the hills of Tuscany in preparation for a concert to be performed on his property on the eve of September 11th, 2001. This portion chronicles exactly how the concert came together and how Sting and the musicians he assembled for the project all worked together to reinvent and rework songs of his solo career and those from his days with the Police. The process is an interesting and vivid illustration of musical and creative Synchronicity in action.With the news of the tragic terrorist attacks of September 11th, 2001, the first part of the DVD turns out to be a time capsule which documents the fear and confusion of the day and a world changed forever. The meeting Sting has with his visiting musicians about whether they wish to proceed with the concert that they so enthusiastically and energetically rehearsed and planned is heartwrenching and gets very close to looking and sounding like group psychotherapy.The resulting concert (the second part of the DVD), although somewhat mellowed by the tragic events of that day becomes a musical healing process for this group of creative international artists and of a frightened and confused new world. The concert appropriately begins with Fragile. Although the melancholic mood fades somewhat as the band plays on, the energy levels just can't rise to a joyous and celebratory level. The musical synergy between all the artists, however is fantastic throughout. The concert ends up being a touching and intimate musical tribute to thousands who have died earlier in the day.All This Time DVD chronicles a creative and healing life process and the result is a mature, soothing, introspective, and 'jazzy' reinvention of Sting's music. If you must choose between the DVD and the audio CD, go for the DVD as the entire process is missed on the audio CD. The interest here is in the Journey, not the Destination."
Can't wait to own the DVD!
ab1012 | Queens, New York | 11/25/2001
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Just saw this on A&E (before the release of DVD) - AMAZING how Sting and his talented band have made new his great music even better - every song is done in a fresh new way - whether by speeding up the tempo (Every Breath You Take), making it more jazzy, showcasing an awesome trumpet player (Moon Over Bourbon Street), or just adding some new kicks (Brand New Day, If I Ever Lose My Faith). The documentary of the preparation for the concert was fascinating - you sit in on the band working through variations and trying out funky stuff - fabulous!The concert was held on Sept. 11, and the references and respects paid to the victims of the terrorist attacks were vivid and moving. The scene of Sting rounding up the team to discuss whether or not the show should go on was a testimony to the democratic way Sting leads his band, giving each player a chance to voice their opinion. We are lucky that they chose to do the show, albeit cutting some of the numbers (which we still get on the DVD from the dress rehearsal video taken Sept. 10) for a beautiful, appropriate set. And perhaps the music was all the better as each member of the band threw their grief and sorrow about the attacks into their music - this was an amazing show."
Fabulous concert, meet Sting the person
cyclista | the Midwest | 11/23/2003
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Wow! I don't even know the words to talk about how tremendous this DVD is. It creates a very intimate tone that I love. I see Sting the person at his home. I feel as though I'm sitting in Sting's backyard listening to the music. I enjoyed the rework of his classic songs. This is a must-see concert.The concert was recorded on September 11, 2001, the day of the World Trade Center tragedy. This is discussed during the concert and the documentary. I found it to be sad at times.The DVD contains four songs not listed here or on the DVD. Desert Rose, with Cheb Mami, was omitted from the final concert but is available in Chapter 32 of the documentary. (Perhaps the sexy belly dancer was thought to be inappropriate due to the tragedy.) I'm glad they included it, it is one of my favorite songs. The other three songs are: Every Little Thing She Does is Magic; Fill Her Up; and Englishman in New York.The DVD is in full anamorphic widescreen. I find the video and audio quality of the DVD to be excellent. The 70 minute documentary is as worth watching as the concert. It would be a mistake to call it an extra, it's part of the show! In fact, I recommend watching the documentary first. (When you see the red circle with an "S" in the lower right hand corner during the documentary, press ENTER if you want to hear the whole song. The DVD will switch to the concert and then switch back to the documentary after the song is over.) This DVD is a bargain, it has a lot of content."