A couple of years back, Sting hit the road with a nearly 50-piece orchestra. This time out, it's pretty much the opposite. The 60-year-old megastar's "Back to Bass" tour is actually a "back-to-basics" tour, with Sting backed by just four other musicians and a supporting vocalist. No worries, though: This stripped-down Sting harks back to his days with the hit-making late '70s/early '80s power trio the Police. In fact, the former Gordon Sumner - while primarily focusing on his 25-plus-year solo career - isn't above tossing in a few creatively reworked versions of Police hits, such as "Every Little Thing She Does Is Magic" and "Message in a Bottle." Sting's top-flight band, which includes his longtime guitarist Dominic Miller and David Sancious on keyboards, is able to keep up with his musical versatility, and he lets them each shine onstage, particularly electric fiddler Peter Tickell. Sting himself is said to be in tremendous form for the tour (which heads overseas next week) and, between songs, chats up audiences on topics from his songwriting process to his love of country music. - Nicole Pensiero
Sting plays at 8 p.m. Saturday at the Borgata Hotel Casino & Spa, 1 Borgata Way, Atlantic City. Tickets: $96-$196. Information: 1-800-298-4200, www.theborgata.com.
Drake is an odd cat. The Canadian crooner with an intense sense of melancholia about everything he does did the teen dream television thing with Degrassi: The Next Generation. He's buds with rough rappers Lil Wayne and Rick Ross. He fights with Common. Who ever has had beef with Common? In between all those things, Drake has released moody platinum albums such as 2011's sophomore release Take Care, and he has launched his "Club Paradise" tour that features Philly's own Meek Mill as well as fellow MCs 2 Chainz, French Montana, and Waka Flocka Flame. Why is he such a sad sack then? Drake moans about missing out on real true love on "Marvin's Room" (dedicated to the spirit of Mr. Gaye) and, during "Over My Dead Body," about a lost Vegas weekend, he concentrates on the negatives. "I was drinking at the Palms last night/And ended up losing everything I came with." Dag, Drake, you're supposed to be in paradise. Cheer up. And stop fighting with Common. It's weird.
- A.D. Amorosi
Drake, the "Club Paradise" tour with special guests Waka Flocka Flame, Meek Mill, 2 Chainz, and French Montana, plays at 7 p.m. Saturday at Susquehanna Bank Center, 1 Harbour Blvd, Camden. Tickets: $35.75-$175.75. Information: 1-800-745-3000, www.livenation.com.