Every Breath You Take

Every Breath You Take

:"For the compilation album, see ""."Infobox Single
Name = Every Breath You Take

Artist = The Police
B-side = "Murder By Numbers"
from Album = Synchronicity
Released = May 1983
Format = vinyl record (7")
Recorded = Dec 1982/Jan 1983
Genre = Pop rock
New Wave] sonta allegro
Length = 4:14
Label = A&M - AM 117
Writer = Sting
Producer = The Police, Hugh Padgham
Audio sample? = yes
Chart position = * #1 (UK)
* #1 (US Billboard Hot 100)
* #2 (Australia)
* #6 (Netherlands)
NoReviews = Yes
Last single = "Secret Journey" (1982)
This single = "Every Breath You Take" (1983)
Next single = "Wrapped Around Your Finger" (1983)Audiosample
Upper caption = Audio sample
Audio file = Every Breath You Take by The Police.ogg

"Every Breath You Take" is a song written by Sting and originally performed by The Police. It was released on their 1983 album "Synchronicity". The single was one of the biggest of 1983, topping the UK charts for four weeks and the Billboard Music Charts (North America) for eight weeks. Sting won Song of the Year and The Police won Best Pop Performance by a Duo or Group with Vocal at the Grammy Awards of 1984 for "Every Breath You Take". The song ranks #84 on the "Rolling Stone" list of the 500 Greatest Songs of All Time.

The song also ranks at #25 on "Billboard's All Time Top 100." [http://www.billboard.com/bbcom/specials/hot100/charts/top100-titles-30.shtml]

Origins and songwriting

Originally thought to be about either angels, the government, parents, or kind people who are looking out for your best interests, the track was in fact written during the collapse of Sting's marriage to Frances Tomelty; the lyrics are the words of a sinister, controlling character, who is watching "every breath you take / every move you make".

According to the "Back to Mono" box-set book, "Every Breath You Take" is said to be influenced by a Gene Pitney song titled "Every Breath I Take". The lyrics are very similar to the opening lines of a short story by science fiction author Judith Merrill titled "Whoever You Are". The chorus appears to borrow heavily from the Leo Sayer track "More Than I Can Say" recorded a couple of years before. As Sting admits to 'borrowing' ideas (see 'So Lonely - 'No woman no cry' link) this is feasible. (Steve Gad) The lyrics "Every move I make" and "Every step I take", with the replacement of "I" with "you", appear in the song "D'yer M'aker" by Led Zeppelin.

"Every Breath You Take" is played by Sting on double bass and lead vocals, Andy Summers on electric guitar, piano and backing vocals, Stewart Copeland on drums and backing vocals, and a group of four violinists.

The demo of the song originally featured a synthesizer. While recording, Summers came up with a guitar part inspired by Béla Bartók that would later become a trademark lick. He mentions in his book "One Train Later" that it was the first and only take done for the song. He was asked to put guitar onto what was to him an already finished song and just played what came to mind. As he finished his take, everyone in the control room burst into applause.

Music video

The song had a music video (directed by duo Godley & Creme) that was praised for its black-and-white cinematography. Both MTV (1999) and VH1 (2002) named it as one of the best music videos ever, placing it 16th and 33rd in their respective top 100 lists. Daniel Pearl won the first MTV cinematography award for his work on the video.cite web|first=Bob|last=Fisher|title=A Conversation with Daniel Pearl|work=International Cinematographers Guild|url=http://www.cameraguild.com/interviews/chat_pearl/pearl_interview.htm|accessdate=2006-10-25]

Covers, adaptations, and legacy

The song has been covered by artists including UB40, Julianna Hatfield, Millencolin, and Copeland. "Weird Al" Yankovic included a polka interpretation in his medley "Polkas on 45". Mexican singer Yuridia remade the song as "Siempre Te Amaré" for her covers album, "Habla el Corazón." Also, a cover version of the song is used extensively in the 1985 film "Cat's Eye."

The song was also covered in 2004 by UB40 for the "50 First Dates" Soundtrack.

Beyond covers, the song has also been heavily sampled or adapted. The refrain and other complete sections were the basis for Puff Daddy's collaborative tribute to murdered rapper The Notorious B.I.G., entitled "I'll Be Missing You," recorded with Faith Evans and 112. In a similar vein Hungarian rapper Speak uses the song's hook for his song "Sometimes", and the Italian duo Karmah had a 2006 European hit entitled "Just Be Good To Me" which drew heavily on a sample of the song.

The song "Won't Go Home Without You by the band Maroon 5 also has a melody based on this song.

Sting himself has been involved in some adaptations of the song. In 1984, Sting performed a version for "Spitting Image" entitled "Every Bomb You Make", which was broadcast again as the finale of the New Year compilation show on January 1 1985. He also performed the song with slightly different lyrics at the Live 8 concert, United Kingdom on July 2 2005, when he sang, "We'll be watching you." referring to the heads of the G8. Also, at the 1997 MTV Video Music Awards Sting joined Puff Daddy for a live performance of the song which was a tribute to rapper Notorious B.I.G. .

In 1999, "Every Breath You Take" was listed as one of the Top 100 Songs of the Century by BMI. [ [http://www.bmi.com/news/entry/232893 Top 100 Songs of the Century] ] [ [http://archer2000.tripod.com/sbs/awardsbmi.html Complete list of Top 100 Songs] ]

In 2003, VH1 ranked the song the #2 greatest Break-up song of all time.

As of 2003, Sting was still taking in an average of $2000 per day in royalties for the then 20-year-old song "Every Breath You Take." [cite news|title=CBS - 60 Minutes II 'Sting: All This Time'|url=http://www.cbsnews.com/stories/2003/12/19/60II/main589570.shtml]

In October 2007, Sting as a "Top European Writer" was awarded a Million-Air certificate for 9 million airplays of "Every Breath You Take" at the prestigious BMI Awards show in London, England with only Van Morrison's "Brown Eyed Girl" a close second at 8 million air plays. [ [http://www.bmi.com/news/entry/535578 2007 BMI London Awards] ]

Brooke White performed the song in the seventh season of "American Idol" for the "Songs From The Year They Were Born" week, broadcast in March 2008.


*Sting - Lead vocals, Double bass, piano, synthesizer
*Andy Summers - Guitar
*Stewart Copeland - Drums

Track listing

7": A&M / AM 117

# "Every Breath You Take" - 4:13
# "Murder By Numbers" - 4:31

2x7": A&M / AM 117

# "Every Breath You Take" - 4:13
# "Murder By Numbers" - 4:31

# "Man In A Suitcase" (live) - 2:18
# "Truth Hits Everyone" (Remix)

* rare 2x7" single

See also

*1983 in music


External links

* [http://mixonline.com/recording/interviews/audio_polices_every_breath/index.html Recording The Police's Every Breath You Take] , Mix Magazine Online, 2003

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