How Police Drummer Stewart Copeland Found a New Beat—in Advertising

Writing for TV spots was 'the real world,' the rock star told us

Two years after our 2005 Q&A with Copeland, The Police got back together, hit the road and grossed $362 million.
Michael Ochs Archives/Getty Images

In 2005, Stewart Copeland was 21 years out of the best job he’d ever had: playing drums for The Police. Starting in 1979, the trio led the second British invasion and eventually sold over 100 million albums.

But when the band split in 1984, Copeland went looking for a new gig. He found it doing TV commercials. In our October 17, 2005 issue, Adweek caught up with the drummer in Los Angeles on the heels of his having written the music for a Mitsubishi spot.

“We just went down to the studio and pounded it out,” he told us then. Asked how scoring for commercials compared to drumming for an arena band, Copeland said his life with The Police was “a fairy tale,” and he enjoyed pleasing clients in “the real world.”

But Copeland was still hoping for a Police reunion, telling us that he routinely called bassist/vocalist Sting just to “harass him” into doing it. Two years after our Q&A, The Police got back together, hit the road and grossed $362 million.

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