The Police

I have this habit of checking all the for sale ads in Victoria on a near daily basis. I see just about everything. This is a habit I developed since moving here, and I really like the fact that it is easy to do. Checking all the for sale ads in Vancouver would be a very time consuming hobby – here I can pretty much see everything posted on any given day in about 5 or 10 minutes.

I had noticed the price of scalped Police tickets falling. They started at around 3 or 4 times face value, then gradually fell until about a week before the concerts dates in Vancouver, I saw most of them at about half. I did a couple google searches looking for tips on not getting conned, and finally took the plunge and bought a pair of $95 tickets at half price. I was a little worried about making the trip across the straight only to find out the tickets were counterfeit, but decided to make the transaction anyhow, knowing that at least I’d park conveniently also near Tinseltown, one of my favourite move theatres in our old stomping grounds.

Turns out, however, that George from Craigslist was selling honest wares, and Julie and I got to see the second public performance by the three founding memebers of the Police given in 21 years.

I was a pretty big fan in my formative music taste developing days. Synchronicity is the album I remember listening to again and again in my prized Sony Walkman. It was their last album, released in 1983, when I was in grade 6.

I can’t (and wouldn’t if I could) take credit for this video I found on youtube, but it was taken from roughly the same vantage point we had. They were amazing. While the sound from this dude’s cellphone camera is predictably not that great, you can hear how tight they are, and how Sting’s voice has hardly aged at all.

This was the song, “Message in a Bottle” that opened the show. I loved how they produced the concert. It was just the three of them – never more than that, and during this first song the white lighting was the only effect they used. The video screens and other lighting effects came on immediately after during the next song, but this was a great way to set the tone. One thing I love about the Police is that they are a trio. It’s a very simple arrangement and about the minimum a live rock/pop band can have. Guitar, Bass and Drums. This scenario means you get to hear the changing relationships musically between the instruments very well. It always strikes me as amazing with this band in particular – their talents really seem to complement eachother, but they have a reputation for not getting along at all, with rumours of screaming matches and fist fights between them.

I have to mention my particular admiration for Stewart Copeland. His drumming is absolutely phenomenal, and I’d say even better live than recorded. His own review from his blog makes for interesting reading – just goes to show you how different his self perception can be from the 20,000 person crowd’s perception, because as far as I could tell, we were all buying it hook line and sinker.

 

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