Friday, January 26, 2007

Bring on the Reunion

A Canadian rock radio station this morning brings us a step closer to a reunion of, next to U2 of course, one of rock's greats - The Police.

The Vancouver classic rock station reported the trio have booked Lions Gate Studios there to rehearse for their upcoming tour. And rumors are stronger still that Sting, guitarist Andy Summers and drummer Stewart Copeland will open the Grammy's in Los Angeles on Feb. 11.

(By the way, my bet for surprise opener from them if they do the show ... "Roxanne" - though I'd personally rather see "So Lonely" or a deep track like "Born in the '50s." What's your pick?)

I've been a fan since the early 80s when my brother Mike brought home Ghost in the Machine but it was 1983's Synchronicity that hit at the perfect time for my young music-loving ears. At 13, I was the perfect age to fall deeply into songs like "King of Pain" and "Tea in the Sahara." Of course, the young ladies loved to fast-forward the tape on my boombox to "Every Breath You Take" - apparently they didn't get that it was pretty much a stalker song. And back when the industry was trying to shy us away from LPs and toward cassette tapes, the courageous buyer could find the great bonus track - "Murder by Numbers." Good stuff all.

I was never able to see The Police that last full tour. The closest they came to upstate New York was Shea Stadium that August and my folks wouldn't let Mike and I treck down to the big city. I was crushed, particularly since Joan Jett was opening.

We did catch them on the Conspiracy of Hope tour in 1986 (the great Amnesty International benefit tour with U2, Peter Gabriel, Bryan Adams and others). They played a pretty quick set but blew the doors down - especially when Bono joined for a great version of "Invisible Sun"

I know, I know, reunion tours always suck. That's true, often. But not always. They are particularly fun for folks like me who never had a true chance to catch the band in their prime but still love the music and are just looking for a good trip down memory lane for a night.

And, while I might also go hit Van Halen's reunion with David Lee Roth - the urge isn't that great since I did catch them in their prime, 1984 in the Meadowlands. And, well, everything they've done since the 1984 album is god awful.

All hail the return of The Police - let's just hope they break out Sally the inflatable girlfriend for the visit. Next up on my reunion wishlist - The Alarm, The Smiths and Genesis (with Gabriel, naturally).


Burke said...

Hey Dave, you certainly have good taste in music. What's your U2 live high point?
I caught them on St. Patrick's Day in Boston, 1992. I was leaning on the center stage and could hear Bono shouting the words to "Dirty Old Town" into Larry's ear.

But I was at the Ever Peaceful show in Worcester 1985. Nothing will ever top that.

Aaron said...

Hey, not all reunions suck.

Springsteen reunited the E Street Band after 15 years, and those shows have been outstanding. J. Geils Band in 2000 was also a great show.

Agreed than VH post-1984 is atrocious.

davidguarino said...

Burke, thanks for the post.

I'd say I have three live U2 high points.

First was my first show, Madison Square Garden, April 1, 1985. Great show. Opened my eyes to the magic and actually got me playing guitar because I wanted to be like the guy Bono pulled up from the crowd to play "Knockin' on Heavens Door."

Second would be the FleetCenter show on June 9, 2001. I waited all day alone but got into the heart and was standing behind only one rather short person so it felt like front row. The setlist was kicking my ass already when they pulled out "Out of Control" - THE greatest live song ever. Amazing.

Third would be the one you mentioned, St. Pat's Day at the old Garden in 92. I was in the back of the floor with an old girlfriend who was acting lick a stick in the mud so I took off about mid-show and ended up right in front of the little stage for the acoustic set and about 10 rows back down front for the rest of the show. Didn't make the girlfriend happy, but I was thrilled.

Would have loved to have been at the famed 'Ever Peaceful' show. I have a bootleg tape, it's a classic.

Of course meeting Bono and Edge at the Four Seasons on the Zoo tour was cool. And then I ran into Bono again while covering the Republican National Convention in New York. I froze the first time so was certain I'd do better the second, and I did. I thanked him for writing 'Out of Control.' He seemed flabbergasted that in this hall of radical Repubs that somebody - he had no idea I was a reporter - would know a song he wrote right after his 18th birthday. Pretty cool.

davidguarino said...

Aaron, thanks to you, too for the post. Good point, but I already made it. Check the links my friend. The one I linked to from the part of my post where I said not all reunions suck was the very tour you mentioned - Springsteen and the E Street Band in 99.

You have good taste and thanks for keeping me honest.

Tony said...

The rumor around the radio world is that The Police reunion was forced on Sting as a condition of releasing the Elizabethan Christmas music CD, which A&M knew was going to tank.

Tony said...

PS: Congrats on the news job!

davidguarino said...

Thanks Tony!