Stewart Copeland Police Troubled For Orchestra | Gardens on Spring Creek | 09/17/22

Stewart Copeland has one of the most versatile careers in the music industry. He is universally recognized for founding, writing and playing drums in the band The Police and we are eternally grateful to him. Copeland is firmly regarded as one of the greatest drummers in history and his playing style is clearly distinct and recognized across many musical genres. His time with The Police from 1977 to 1986 was at a time of an ever-changing music industry. Police brought something different to the table when it came to musicality, songwriting styles, intricate arrangements, and all with just three players.

They had a rock and roll foundation in their sound while incorporating punk, new wave, pop and reggae, providing audiences with a very open palette of styles. They were prolific in a sense of uniqueness, gender-hopping idealism, and straightforward talent. They also had a lead singer with one of the most recognizable voices in music history. Sting on vocals and bass, Copeland on drums and Andy Summers on guitar were the super trio that took the world by storm. During their decade together they lit up the charts, toured the world and were one of the most iconic bands of the time and still are today.

Ashley Tamar, Amy Keys and Carmel Helene |  Gardens on Spring Creek

Fast-forward through Copeland’s career and you’ll find he’s contributed to some too-misunderstood projects and collaborations. After The Police disbanded, Copeland established himself composing soundtracks for movies and even video games. He wrote orchestral music, operas and ballet pieces. His contributions to the music and film industry are impressive and ambitious. The list of compositions he has contributed to film and television is too long to list here, but rest assured he has made an impact and is highly regarded in the industry. His creative spirit, accolades and Hall of Fame inductions are part of his never-ending story that will live forever in the world of music, theater and film.

Stewart Copeland |  Spring Creek Gardens

The Copeland collaborations are just as diverse and interesting. Peter Gabriel employed Copeland to play drums on his song “Red Rain” from his 1986 album “So” due to his mastery of the hi-hat. He’s collaborated with Adam Ant, Mike Rutherford and Tom Waits to name just a few of the eclectic situations he finds himself in. Copeland formed Animal Logic with jazz bassist Stanley Clark and singer-songwriter Debra Holland. The trio enjoyed great success with their debut album and world tour, but disbanded soon after. Copeland teamed up with Primus vocalist and bassist Les Claypool and Phish vocalist and guitarist Trey Anastasio to form the super trio Oysterhead. I know this is a brief recap on one of the most prolific musicians on the planet, but I just wanted to give a brief overview of Copeland and his extraordinary journey.

Master - Wes Kenney |  Gardens on Spring Creek

Stewart Copeland: Police Deranged for Orchestra is Copeland’s rendition of many classic Police songs. “Deranged” simply means that the songs are re-orchestrated by combining a rock band with an orchestra. Copeland on drums was joined by Ashley Tamar, Carmel Helene and Amy Keys on vocals with Rusty Anderson on guitar, Armand Sabal Lecco on bass and a twenty-seven piece orchestra led by Maestro Wes Kenney. Copeland’s unique approach to so many familiar classic rock songs with so many talented performers was a refreshingly nostalgic musical adventure of creativity, longevity and storytelling. He took audiences on a journey of creative craftsmanship, breathing new life into these songs with clever arrangements and heart-pounding energy.

Rusty Anderson and Armand Sabal Lecco |  Fort Collins, Colorado

The moment Copeland hit the stage, the energy level of the giant crowd on the green lawn in front of him erupted with excitement and anticipation. Copeland said, “We’re going to rock tonight,” and his energy was infectious and fun. He welcomed all participants and introduced the Fort Collins Symphony Orchestra to thunderous applause. Copeland and his drums were set up on a riser to the left while the orchestra was raised slightly to the rear of the stage. Guitar, bassist and vocals were all positioned front and center with Copeland. The whole look and feel of the setup was cool, giving a rock and roll feel and orchestral music coming together to lift your spirits and lull your soul.

Stewart Copeland |  Gardens on Spring Creek

the wrecker was the set opener bringing the eager crowd back to the quick reality of the holy cow, it’s going to be a great night! Copeland’s fast beats and fiery fills were on full display, as the audio system had plenty of punch to get its point across. king of pain and Murder in numbers were the next two songs, the vocals of the three singers blended together beautifully, giving the songs an angelic undertone with tremendous power and vocal control. Roxanne was the fourth song and Copeland said, “You might not recognize this one at first, we mixed it up a bit!” It was cool and melodic and yes, a little disguised at first, but then it came back to its familiarity and singing skills. It was a wonderful display of creativity and presentation.

Stewart Copeland and his band |  Fort Collins, Colorado

The set was packed with hits from different periods of The Police’s dominance over the music world. Tea in the Sahara, One world is enough, The spirits of the material world were all in there. The orchestra gave a powerful fullness, subtle calm angelic qualities and a divine rendition of the songs. Copeland’s warm, humorous personality shone through as he told stories about where songs originated in different times and places. He opened up about his former bandmates Sting and Andy Summers and their adventures together. It was more than a concert; it was a history lesson from another time and it was very relevant to the audience because we were there with them on the exploration. All we had to do was turn on the radio to be part of the journey. The police have touched so many lives in so many ways, and their work will live on with the world long after the lights have gone out on our generation.

Stewart Copeland |  Gardens on Spring Creek |  September 17, 2022

The show rocketed hit after hit, the anticipation of what was to follow was quiet nervousness as there are so many great songs you want to hear. It was really amazing to hear all these songs played together live. It was like the greatest hits compilation in the world delivered to you in one beautiful evening. Also on the magic music folder was Equalizer, Every Breath You Take, Walk in your footsteps, Orchestra Jam, The beds too big without you, Do not stand So Close to Me, message in a bottle, White Regatta, Every little thing she does is magic and Walk on the moon.

Stewart Copeland congratulates Backstage Flash.

What a great performance and a fantastic evening. Thanks to Stewart Copeland and his band, the Fort Collins Symphony Orchestra, Lincoln Center and the Bohemian Foundation for giving fans the gift of music.

Gardens on Spring Creek |  Public of Fort Collins, CO


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