Today’s music is brought to you by my teen hormones, not to mention my burgeoning alternative music tastes.
The Police were, and still are, one of my favourite bands. From the first note of the first song I ever heard off the first album, Outlandos D’Amour, I was completely hooked. Five-ish albums later, and they were done the best part of their career together, but in those five albums put together a music catalog so brilliant that any band since would be hard pressed to match it. I mean five albums of almost completely solid songwriting and musicianship — the odd misstep from time to time, but generally speaking a truly great catalog.
Yeah, the music was great. But I was also all about the three gorgeous bottle blondes that were Sting, Andy Summers and Stewart Copeland. OH MY DOG. I had a giant poster of Sting on my wall that stayed with me long after the band fell apart. And getting to see them live at the Police Picnic in Toronto in 1983 — well, I felt the excitement rising in my chest to epic proportions, and I can honestly say I know now what it was like to be one of those girls screaming during the heights of Beatlemania. (No, I didn’t scream. But I sure felt like it.)
I don’t have a favourite song, necessarily — all the songs ebb and flow in and out of favour depending on my mood.
There’s Roxanne, the song that started it all, and that non-fans love to hate:
And the sweet, pop-py joyousness of Every Little Thing She Does Is Magic (recorded in Montserrat, where my father dreamed of relocating my family — oh to have been able to visit Sir George Martin’s Air Studios, now all gone with Hurricane Hugo in ’89 and the volcano a few years after that):
There’s the silliness of De Do Do Do, De Da Da Da, which for the quirky lyric is still a terrific tune:
And the darker, literary allusions woven through Don’t Stand So Close to Me:
I don’t know if it’s based in fact or urban legend, but it sure makes for a clever song.
There’s Message In A Bottle, another pure piece of songwriting brilliance, and one my daughter loves:
And then, for one that wasn’t such a big hit, side 2 of Ghost in the Machine has this little gem, Omegaman. I often listen to it when I am working out.
Nothing here from Synchronicity, which was a great album — but if you ever liked a Police song, chances are it was from this album, and was all over the radio, and you know it already.
Welcome back to the 80s. The 15-year-old in me is squeeing right now, singing loudly, and dancing frenetically around the room.