Andy Summers Says Sting’s Laziness Caused The Police’s Reggae Influence

During his recent interview with Guitar World, the Police guitarist Andy Summers opened up about the creation process of a reggae-influenced Police song. Summers revealed that the main reasons behind that were the frontman Sting‘s personality and an idea that he found.

The Police released their second studio album entitled ‘Reggatta de Blanc,’ which means ‘White Reggae,’ and it was a message to the fans about what they should expect about their style. Once again, the band combined rock, punk, reggae, and jazz in their works, making their style unique from the others and contributing to their popularity and success worldwide later, even though the band members couldn’t work together for a long time.

In addition, one of the tracks from the record ‘Walking on the Moon’ drew significant attention from critics thanks to his reggae influences; that’s why the reporter wanted to know more details about the song. Summers told its origin story, saying that on a disastrous Christmas in which they were cold and hungry, he, Stewart Copeland, and Sting started listening to Bob Marley’s songs, which they admired so much and became an inspiration for the singer.

Marley’s style made Sting think about composing and playing a reggae-influenced song which would become ‘Walking on the Moon.’ According to the guitarist, the Police vocalist wanted to sing more and play less the bass guitar with the help of the bassline’s convenience in the middle tempo. Summers emphasized Sting’s laziness as a bass guitarist and people’s seeing them as a reggae band, but they didn’t intend to be like that.

Summers said in his interview that:

“Well, that song came from a diabolical Christmas when we were freezing and starving. Stewart loaned Sting his Bob Marley records, and I think what happened is that Sting picked up on the convenience of the reggae bassline, so he could sing more and not have to play as much, which is typical Sting, lazy motherf*cker. So that’s what happened. I worked.

People would go, ‘Oh, you’re a reggae band.’ We weren’t a reggae band! Of course, everybody loved Bob Marley, the greatest of all of them. But we had no pretensions to being a reggae band. It was that the convenience of that bassline in the middle tempo was something we could do. It was lovely because it gave me space to put in those big chords like on ‘Walking On The Moon.'”

You can listen to the song below.