Sting To Sing For Microsoft At Free New York Outdoor Show

Thursday gig, part of Microsoft software launch, makes up canceled September 11 concert.

Sting will make up the webcast he canceled last month when he plays a free show Thursday in New York that can be seen live over the Internet.

The show, set for 1 p.m. in Manhattan’s Bryant Park, is part of Microsoft’s Windows XP operating system launch. At Sting’s request, Microsoft will donate software to two New York schools closed by the September 11 terrorist attacks, according to a statement from the computer firm.

A live Sting webcast on September 11 was cut short after one song, “Fragile,” in deference to those affected by the tragedy. The concert itself, produced at Sting’s villa in Tuscany, Italy, continued and will be released as a live album on November 20 (see “Live Sting LP Shows What Fans Missed When Webcast Was Cut Short” ).

“Thursday’s concert and worldwide webcast will allow me to complete the project we chose to abandon due to the horrific events on September 11,” Sting said in the statement. “I am especially pleased to do this in the city most affected, and in solidarity with all New Yorkers.”

Tickets for Thursday’s free show are available at various New York-area retailers. The webcast can be accessed at music.msn.com/sting.

Sting, whose 1999 album Brand New Day received a sales boost when Jaguar used the song “Desert Rose” in TV advertisements, isn’t the first star hired by Microsoft to promote Windows XP. Commercials featuring Madonna’s “Ray of Light” began airing last week (see “Microsoft Taps Madonna’s ‘Ray Of Light’ For Ad Campaign” ).