April 4th 1979 at the Bottom Line, The Police played their first NYC gig.
“You sound lively! The singer noted, before the band broke into “I cant stand losing you.”
Ska punk with a steady bass groove…nobody listens to a word I say …I can’t, I can’t…
By the time they encored with Roxanne, their big hit at the time, the entire room was on its feet and it was clear we’d be hearing much more from Sting, Andy Summers and Stuart Copeland (son of the one time CIA Director, and brother of Miles who landed the trio their first recording contract.)
There certainly was not a shadow of a doubt that the lead singer (and bass player), had that certain charisma and star quality that ensured he at least, would stick around for awhile.
I was there. I wrote about it the next day for Addix Magazine where I was the Music Editor at the time.
2019, 40 years down the line, Sting’s playing Taos. I’ll be there.
Touring behind his new album of reinterpreted Police and solo classics, My Songs, Sting will perform on the stage in Kit Carson Park on Sept. 2 at the end of Labor Day weekend.
The tour “Sting: My Songs” kicks off in Paris later this month.
Tickets for the Taos show go on sale at taos.org/sting at 10 a.m. today, May 3. They are $82 online or $92 at the gate.
The park accommodates about 8,000, and Jamie Lenfestey, director of Santa Fe operations for producer/promoter AMP Concerts, expects the show to sell out.
“We are working with the town of Taos to promote their park venue and the town as a concert destination,” said Lenfestey . “Our goal is to eventually create a scene akin to what Telluride has developed, so attracting artists like Sting is a step in that direction.”
With a career spanning four decades, Sting is an 18-time Grammy winner, a five-time Emmy winner, an Oscar nominee and, since 2003, a member of the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame for his work with The Police.
He has sold close to 100 million albums, including those with The Police and during his solo career, which he began in 1985 with the release of The Dream of the Blue Turtles.
My Songs, which goes on sale May 23, features songs from his entire catalogue, including “Walking on the Moon, “Every Breath You Take” and a live version of the old crowd pleaser, “Roxanne.”
“Some of them reconstructed, some of them refitted, some of them reframed,” he says on his website. “But all of them with a contemporary focus.”
Sting is married to the English actress Trudy Styler, who was interviewed by the Guardian in April.
“I’ve been with Sting for 37 years – 27 married.” She said. “We’ve been in New York for nine years, but we travel back to the UK and to our winery in Palagio, in Tuscany. Sting is always travelling, too. Plus, we’ve got grandchildren dotted from one coast to the other.“
“We don’t have bodyguards.” She told the paper, “Sting’s very level-headed. He knows the moment that he’s outside the door he’s a public persona. But inside our home he’s just dad,”
“There’s no being famous and successful inside the house.”
Sting and Styler have visited Taos over the years, so this show makes perfect sense. In a town where celebrities do their own grocery shopping and no one gives a damn, body guards aren’t necessary.
Taos is too cool to care.
But rest assured by the time he plays Roxanne (and there are rumours floating around that Summers and Copeland may show up on this tour), everyone will be on their feet, grooving to that steady Ska beat.
For more information and to buy tickets, please visit Taos.org linked below.
Editor’s Note: A bit of Rock lore; it’s long been bandied about that The Police were named (tongue in cheek), as a nod to the Copeland brothers father’s CIA gig.
Photograph of The Police in NYC by Lynn Goldsmith
Sting undercover, Stock File
Sting in Paris 1979 by Barry Schultz