Every Breath You Take

“There’s something darkly ambiguous about it. It’s both romantic and threatening at the same time. That’s its power. I wrote the refrain “every breath you take” then worked back from that. Then once I’d written and performed it I realized there was something dark about it. My intention might have been to write a romantic song, something seductive and enveloping and warm. Then I realized that actually another side of my personality was involved too, which is about control and jealousy, and that’s its power. It was written at a difficult time in my life.”Sting (423)
“I’ve set up this situation of this character who’s terminally miserable. There’s nothing original but the song has enormous power and I try to work out why. I think the reason is because it’s ambiguous. I wrote it initially as a seductive love song and yet my life began to invade the song unconsciously. At the time I wrote this song, my life was falling apart – I was very successful at the time and yet my band was falling apart, my first marriage was falling apart, I was falling apart – and I think that invaded the song. For me the song is quite dark and it’s not about seduction and it’s not about love and tenderness, it’s about surveillance and control. There is no light at the end of the tunnel, the guy is trapped in his obsessions.”Sting (422)
“I don’t think it’s a sad song. I think it’s a nasty little song, really rather evil. It’s about jealousy and surveillance and ownership.”Sting (778)

King Of Pain

“I was in Jamaica and I was looking at the sun one day. I noticed some sun spot activity and the following conversation took place with my significant other, Trudie. I say, “There’s a little black spot on the sun today,” Trudie waits expectantly for the pay off, “that’s my soul up there.” Trudie lifts her eyes to heaven and goes, “There he goes again, the king of pain”.”Sting (422)

Message In A Bottle

“It’s very easy to live [in a big city – Ed] surrounded by millions of people and feel isolated. I’ve always had a Robinson Crusoe fantasy. I feel loneliness but at the same time I relish it. I’m pretty misanthropic, I don’t really like people that much. That’s where this song came from. The first verse is a sea shanty about a castaway on a desert island. The second verse is more about the psychological reality of those wounded in love, existential loneliness if you like.”Sting (422)
“I think ‘Message In A Bottle’ is a good song. That can move me. I like the idea that while it’s about loneliness and alienation it’s also about finding solace and other people going through the same thing. The guy’s on a desert island and throws a bottle out to sea saying he’s alone and all these millions of bottles come back saying, So what? So am I! I like the fact that the whole deal is clinched by the third verse. It makes a journey.”Sting (777)

De Do Do Do, De Da Da Da

“I’d always felt that song had basically been dismissed as garbage. [As baby talk – Interviewer]. That was the whole idea! I was trying to make an intellectual point about how the simple can be so powerful. Why are our favorite songs “Da Doo Ron Ron” and “Doo Wah Diddy Diddy”? In the song, I tried to address that issue.”Sting (551)
“I always thought it was an articulate song about being inarticulate. The first thing you have to consider is that this was a huge hit on both sides of the Atlantic. I was intrigued with why songs like that worked. Why ‘Da Do Ron Ron’, why ‘Doo Wah Diddy’, why ‘Be Bop A Lula’, why ‘Tutti Frutti’ worked. I came up with the idea that they worked because they were totally innocent. They weren’t trying to tell you anything or distort your vision – it was just a sound. So in the song I try to intellectualise and analyse why that works so effectively which is self-defeating in a way but it was still a massive hit.”Sting (777)

Synchronicity (The Album)

“Synchronicity is really more autobiographical. It’s about my mental breakdown and the putting back together of that personality. I’d hope that once I am mended my ideas would be more objective. I’m in a strange situation. When I was a schoolteacher, or on the dole, I wrote a lot of songs and I felt that I was writing for the man next to me in the dole queue. And now because I’m who I am I lead a rarefied kind of life that’s unique to me and a few other people and the man in the street won’t be interested in what I want to tell him. I write from experience, but it’s not one that’ll ring bells anywhere else. The ‘on the road’ songs have all been done, so… I write about my own psychological state hoping that someone will sympathise. It’s weird, as a writer, which I primarily regard myself as.”Sting (778)