Ian Newton on the Police 2007-08 world tour.
North Ferriby, UK (January 9, 2015)—Journeyman monitor engineer Ian Newton died on December 19, 2014 of a heart attack at the age of 52. A winner of Pro Sound News’ Centerstage Award multiple times, Newton worked with many of the biggest names in music over the years, including Tina Turner, Roger Waters, Janet Jackson, Barbra Streisand, Sting, The Police, Madonna, Oasis, Pink and Kate Bush, among many others.
Speaking with Pro Sound News in 2005, Newton recalled he had been interested in pro audio from an early age: “It was something that I was always interested in, from school, really. I was always into music. Most of my friends were musicians and I really wasn’t, so I ended up doing this side of it instead of playing.”
The result, however, was that he gained a reputation as a dependable and upbeat presence at stageside. He won PSN’s Centerstage Award multiple times, taking home a trophy for his work on Madonna’s 2004 Re-Invention tour, and again in 2008 for the Police’s two-year reunion tour.
In an extensive remembrance on her website, Kate Bush recalled Newton’s support in the run up to her 2014 Before The Dawn concerts—the singer’s first performances in 35 years. While crediting him for introducing her to in-ear monitors and his dedication to the shows’ sound, she noted, “He was a lovely, warm, generous-spirited man with a lovely sense of humour. Thank you Ian for being such an invaluable part of the team, for being so dependable and for being there for me and helping me have the confidence to get up there and perform live.”
ClairGlobal’s website also praised Newton in a post, noting “one of the nicest and most sincere guys to grace our industry and the lives of those that knew and worked with him. Never a bad word said, always there with a warm smile and a steady confidence, and so many tours and gigs done to peak perfection.”