The_Return_Of_The_Police__Sting__Summers_And_Copeland_Are_Back_

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					Title:
The Return Of The Police: Sting, Summers And Copeland Are Back!


Word Count:
1977


Summary:
The Police reunited for an appearance on the 2007 Grammy Awards Show. Anyone familiar with Sting,
Andy Summers and Stewart Copeland knew that a Grammy Awards Show would never be reason enough
for the original band members to come together and suddenly decide to perform on television. It was
obvious that this was some kind of reintroduction to the band. That suspicion was confirmed a day later
when a press conference was held in Los Angeles to announce that tickets would soon ...



Keywords:
police,music,sting,stewart copeland,andy summers,reunion,tour



Article Body:
The Police reunited for an appearance on the 2007 Grammy Awards Show. Anyone familiar with Sting,
Andy Summers and Stewart Copeland knew that a Grammy Awards Show would never be reason enough
for the original band members to come together and suddenly decide to perform on television. It was
obvious that this was some kind of reintroduction to the band. That suspicion was confirmed a day later
when a press conference was held in Los Angeles to announce that tickets would soon be available for an
upcoming tour. A group known for surprising the media, their fans and sometimes even themselves, had
done so handily. It was that way since the beginning.


The original band was formed by Stewart Copeland as a trio that became a foursome sometime in the spring
of 1977. By early summer, Strontium 90 appeared on the scene as a reinvented version of the same group.
After having undergone some personnel shifts and adjustments, the band members were Sting, Stewart
Copeland, Andy Summers and Henry Padovani. As Strontium 90, the band recorded a few demo tracks,
played gigs in London and Paris and worked on perfecting their sound. Sometime in the summer of 1977
they began calling themselves The Police, a name originally chosen by Stewart Copeland.


Looking to get their sound on vinyl, The Police tried laying down some studio tracks in late July of 1977
with the help of music producer John Cale, a Welsh musician and one of the founding members of The
Velvet Underground. The recording sessions went nowhere and revealed that Henry Padovani lacked the
guitar skills needed to keep up with the others. As a result, Padovani left the band in early August. By the
fall of 1977, The Police became the threesome of Sting, Summers and Copeland that we know so well. The
trio with a unique sound bigger than the band was tailor made for the small clubs and venues of England's
Punk and new wave music scene. As a result, they became popular with British Fans.
After giving the recording studio another try, The Police had better luck. Roxanne was released as a single
in early 1978. Can’t Stand Losing You, So Lonely and their first album, Outlandos d'Amour, followed later
that year. Through a deal brokered by Stewart Copeland’s brother, Miles, A&M Records signed The Police
to a recording contract and released Outlandos d'Amour in the USA.


In 1979, the band toured the USA to support their newly released singles and the first album. The press
loved to describe them as three guys from England with bleached blond hair playing rocked up Jamaican
Rebel Music driving around the USA in a cannibalized, overdue rental van filled with stolen instruments.


The blond hair was actually the result of a commercial they did to earn some quick money. Afterward, they
decided to stay with the look. The trio did drive around from gig to gig in a leased Ford Cargo Van that had
seen better days and was long past the original return date. The van contained 'borrowed' instruments and
equipment. Actually, according to statements made by the band members during that time, they rented the
instruments in New York City for a club date and forgot to return them until their tour was finished. It’s said
the band made good on the extra charges for the van and instruments.


Their second album, Regatta De Blanc, was released in the fall of 1979. Walking on the Moon and Message
in a Bottle received a huge amount of airplay and helped fill most of their shows to overflowing. In
November of 1979, I was lucky enough to squeeze into My Father’s Place on Long Island to watch an
amazing performance by The Police. The event was simulcast on WLIR, Long Island’s New Music Radio
Station at that time. A friend later provided me with an audiocassette of the performance. I wore that
cassette out.


The third album by The Police, Zenyatta Mondatta, was released in October of 1980. The record hit number
one in the UK and number five in the USA against tough competition which included AC/DC, Pink Floyd,
the Rolling Stones, John Lennon, Queen and Bruce Springsteen to name a few. Songs like Driven To Tears
and Don't Stand So Close To Me could be heard playing constantly on the radio. Despite all that radio play,
people didn’t tire of their sound and always seemed to want more.


Sting’s newly acquired Star Power as the band front man, an actor and solo musician in his own right gave
him a constant edge over Steward Copeland. Copeland was his most vocal critic in the band and the two
actually got into fistfights on several occasions. It probably didn’t help that managers, concert promoters,
publicity agents and record companies all knew there would be no Police or paycheck without Sting and
likely took his side on many issues. That must have driven Copeland nuts. Despite the infighting, the band
members were still able to agree enough at that time to get down to business and move the band forward.


In 1981, just one year after their third album was released, their fourth album hit the stores. Ghost in the
Machine flew to a ranking of number one in the UK and number two in the USA. Spirits In The Material
World, Every Little Thing She Does Is Magic and Invisible Sun captured the imagination of fans and were
placed in constant rotation on radio stations from coast to coast in the USA. These songs proved that the
band could make occasional changes in their sound without evolving away from their fan base as others had.


In 1983, the band released Synchronicity, their fifth and final album to date. It reached number one in the
UK and number one in the USA. The album won the group several Grammy Awards and lots of critical
acclaim. Songs like Every Breath You Take, King of Pain and Wrapped Around Your Finger became instant
favorites that crossed over musical formats and received a huge amount of airplay. Synchronicity II became
a favorite song of rock and new music disc jockeys. Today, that album is considered a classic and much
beloved by most fans and music critics.


Without an official announcement and with little fanfare, The Police went their separate ways when the
Synchronicity Tour finally ended in the spring of 1984. Because of all the albums sold, concerts performed,
airplay received and media attention during that last tour, most fans probably felt the band members were
just taking a well-deserved break.


The Police reunited for three concerts that benefited Amnesty International in 1986. Unlike the Beatles,
there must have been enough esprit de corps there to occasionally get back together for the right reasons. In
1992 the band members reluctantly performed two songs at Sting’s wedding reception after being pressured
to do so by the A List of guests. That led nowhere.


In March of 2003, The Police played several songs together during a ceremony for their induction into the
Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. The event was broadcast on television. Unlike the charity concerts or spur of
the moment wedding gig, the 2003 performance of the reunited band members gave fans reason to hope for
more. It didn't seem strained and even Sting said he was surprised at how easy it was for the guys to perform
together again. That gig proved that the band members could play together and still have a good time. That
gave fans a reason to hope for more, but in the end it was all up to one band member.


Sting hit it as big without The Police as he did with them. Anyone paying attention to radio, broadcast
television or cable during the 1990's could not escape him. The Soul Cages, Ten Summoner's Tales, Bring
On The Night and other albums brought the S man lots of attention, accolades and money. Few performers
create the kind of musical presence that Sting does and that sells well.


I think the defining moment of his fame as a solo performer during the 1980s and 1990s came at one of his
concerts. I happened to see a video filmed for some project about the S-man. After finishing the concert,
Sting came back stage. It appeared that he had turned in a long performance and already done one or two
encores. He looked thin, almost frail, couldn't catch his breath, was bathed in sweat, had tight fitting clothes
on and all but collapsed against a backstage wall. He was wearing at least four or five Cause Ribbons on his
lapel and yet couldn't get anyone to bring him a bottle of cold water. Sting had become a tool used by the
entertainment industry as much as a Craftsman of it. Perhaps that is what brought him back to the band that
started it all.


Sting says that he woke up one morning and thought that it was time for The Police to reunite. It may be that
he was simply tired of constantly facing the music and everything that came with it all by himself. Even as
the powerful front man of that legendary band, it wasn’t Sting and the Police. It was just The Police. As a
fan, I always thought of the band as one entity, not one person. Maybe that was what Sting wanted after all
his individual fame.


Most people probably think that Summers and Copeland were just sitting around waiting for the call from
the S-man. Nothing could be further from the truth. Getting past the reality that both may have felt that ship
had sailed along time ago, they have had lively and prosperous careers. Beyond his eighteen solo albums,
Andy Summers started his career in 1965 and played with Eric Burden and The Animals, Zoot Money’s Big
Roll Band, Dantalion’s Chariot and had many other successful collaborations and projects. Stewart
Copeland is considered one of the world’s finest drummers and began his career in 1974. Beyond his work
with bands like Curved Air, Animal Logic, Oyster Head and Klark Kent, Copeland has had an amazing
number of collaborations and proven to be a prolific and very successful soundtrack composer. But just like
Sting, it was The Police that probably brought them the kind of attention that lead to bigger and better
things.


A press conference held at the famous Whiskey A-Go-Go in Los Angeles the morning after the Grammy
Awards told the tale. The Police were back and ready to go on tour. The press event atmosphere was electric
and featured Sting, Andy Summers and Stewart Copeland playing a set for reporters, invited guests and
some lucky fans.


Reporters that were present seemed as surprised and shocked as fans. Most were in awe of what they were
seeing, wondered if the reunion would last past the press event and seemed more interested in enjoying the
spontaneous show than asking questions. Those that did ask questions kept it unusually light. While it could
be that they were just burnt out from the Grammy’s, it was more likely that they weren’t use to dealing with
a musically in your face band like The Police. Even Ozzy and his occasional reunions with Black Sabbath
couldn’t create the kind of atmosphere The Police could.


Although the new album question is left unanswered at this writing and the future of the band past the tour
remains unannounced, there is another question that I think fans would be interested in having answered. If
arguments over the music and artistic differences broke them apart so many years ago, what really brought
them back together? What made Sting suddenly decide the time was right. What made them all willing to
face the same old arguments and pressures all over again? I’m guessing it was Synchronicity. Welcome back
guys!




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