Saturday, October 3, 2015

Broken Music by Sting

Two things stand out for me in this memoir written by the Police frontman about his childhood, adolescence, and early music career.

First, this tribute to books and English teachers:

I will become so swept up in these journeys of discovery that I will continue to read and read, long after the academic need has passed. There are no books in my house apart from a Bible and some equally unfathomable engineering texts from my father’s apprenticeship, but soon books will become for me an acquisitive passion filling up rooms and rooms with their dusty and inert bodies. Like my grandmother, I will never throw a book away, storing dog-eared paperbacks from school or college, year after year, stacked like hunting trophies on makeshift shelves in my rooms. For to sit in a room full of books, and remember the stories they told you, and to know precisely where each one is located and what was happening in your life at that time or where you were when you first read it is the languid and distilled pleasure of the connoisseur, and this lifelong pleasure I owe to Mr. McGough and others like him.

Remind you of any one you know?

And second, this description of the first time Sting played with Stewart Copeland:

Even at this very early moment of our relationship, it clear that there is something going on, some chemistry, some understanding, some recognition, a rapport and a tension between the amphetamine pulse of his kick drum and the shifting, rolling ground of the bass. It is like two dancers finding a sudden an unexpected harmony in the glide of their steps, or the sexual rhythms of natural lovers, or the synchronized strokes of a rowing team in the flow of a fast river. Such rapport is not common, and I realize very quickly that this guy is the most exciting drummer I’ve ever worked with, almost too exciting. I also realize that tempos will be abandoned as easily as loose baggage on that runaway train, and whatever music I shall manage to make with this whirlwind, it will not be gentle or easy, it will be a wild ride to hell and back.

Reminds you of the music they made famous, doesn’t it?

+ + +

This post was written by Eric Lanke, an association executive, blogger and author. For more information, visit, follow him on Twitter @ericlanke or contact him at

No comments:

Post a Comment