What’s the secret to keeping a legendary rock band together after more than two decades apart?
Fatherhood, says Stewart Copeland, drummer for The Police.
Circumstances had to be just right for the rock trio to reunite for its long-anticipated concert tour, which stops at a sold-out Quicken Loans Arena July 16, he says. But once he, lead singer/bassist Sting and guitarist Andy Summers regrouped, the patience developed from parenting their respective broods helped them handle those oft-publicized tensions that divided them during their heyday.
“All three of us are major patriarchs now, so we’ve all dealt with teenagers,” the 54-year-old rock-star-turned-film-composer and father of seven says, then chuckles. “Raising teenage kids is good training for playing in a rock band.”
Even with the increased tolerance levels, Copeland freely admits that the reunion has not been without its challenges. He describes the experience as “brutally cheerful, cheerfully brutal” as well as “deeply inspiring.” To prepare for the hour-and-45-minute set — a show Copeland describes as “just three guys” — the group spent weeks getting “deep, deep, deep in each other’s pockets musically” at Sting’s country estate in Italy, a process that was more difficult for three top musicians than fans might think. “Each of us has been in our own world,” Cope-land explains.
They also hired a nutritionist and physical therapist “to keep these three blond heads looking sharp” on tour.
“It hasn’t gotten to the level of some other groups,” Copeland says of the entourage. “We haven’t got a tour shrink, which I bitterly regret. I wish we had one who would arrange play dates between the members of the band and apportion the amount of time we spend together, just like I hear that Mick [Jagger] and Keith [Richards] have their time together carefully managed. Ah, man, that kind of attention would be really cool.”