Sting (musician)


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Sting performing at The Queen's Birthday Party at the Royal Albert Hall in 2018
Gordon Matthew Thomas Sumner

(1951-10-02) 2 October 1951 (age 67)
Other namesSting
Alma materNorthern Counties College of Education
  • Musician
  • singer
  • songwriter
  • actor
Years active1971–present
Children6; including Joe, Mickey, and Eliot
Musical career
Associated acts

Gordon Matthew Thomas Sumner CBE (born 2 October 1951), known as Sting, is an English musician, singer, songwriter, and actor. He was the principal songwriter, lead singer, and bassist for the new wave rock band The Police from 1977 to 1984, and launched a solo career in 1985.

He has included elements of rock, jazz, reggae, classical, new-age and worldbeat in his music.[1] As a solo musician and a member of the Police, he has received 16 Grammy Awards, including Song of the Year for ”Every Breath You Take”, three Brit Awards, including Best British Male in 1994 and Outstanding Contribution in 2002,[2] a Golden Globe, an Emmy and four nominations for the Academy Award for Best Original Song. In 2002, he received the Ivor Novello Award for Lifetime Achievement from the British Academy of Songwriters, Composers and Authors and was also inducted into the Songwriters Hall of Fame. He was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame as a member of the Police in 2003. In 2000, he received a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame for recording. In 2003, Sting received a CBE from Elizabeth II at Buckingham Palace for services to music. He was made a Kennedy Center Honoree at the White House in 2014, and was awarded the Polar Music Prize in 2017.[3]

With the Police, Sting became one of the world's best-selling music artists. Solo and with the Police combined, he has sold over 100 million records.[4] In 2006, Paste ranked him 62nd of the 100 best living songwriters.[5] He was 63rd of VH1's 100 greatest artists of rock,[6] and 80th of Q magazine's 100 greatest musical stars of the 20th century.[7] He has collaborated with other musicians, including "Money for Nothing" with Dire Straits, "Rise & Fall" with Craig David, "All for Love", with Bryan Adams and Rod Stewart, "You Will Be My Ain True Love" with Alison Krauss, and introduced the North African music genre raï to Western audiences through his international hit "Desert Rose" with Cheb Mami. In 2018 he released the album 44/876, a collaboration with Jamaican musician Shaggy.

Early life

Gordon Matthew Thomas Sumner was born on 2 October 1951, in Wallsend, Northumberland, England,[8][9] the eldest of four children of Audrey (née Cowell), a hairdresser, and Ernest Matthew Sumner, a milkman and engineer.[10] He grew up near Wallsend's shipyards, which made an impression on him. At eight[11] or ten[12] years old, he was inspired by the Queen Mother waving at him from a Rolls-Royce to divert from the shipyard prospect towards a more glamorous life.[13] He helped his father deliver milk and by ten was "obsessed" with an old Spanish guitar left by an emigrating friend of his father.[14]

He attended St Cuthbert's Grammar School in Newcastle upon Tyne. He visited nightclubs such as Club A'Gogo to see Cream and Manfred Mann, who influenced his music.[15] After being a bus conductor, building labourer and tax officer, he attended Northern Counties College of Education (now Northumbria University) from 1971 to 1974 and qualified as a teacher.[16] He taught at St Paul's First School in Cramlington for two years.[17]

Sting performed jazz in the evening, weekends and during breaks from college and teaching. He played with the Phoenix Jazzmen, Newcastle Big Band, and Last Exit. He gained his nickname after his habit of wearing a black and yellow sweater with hooped stripes with the Phoenix Jazzmen. Bandleader Gordon Solomon thought he looked like a bee (or according to Sting himself, "they thought I looked like a wasp"), which prompted the name "Sting".[18][19] In the 1985 documentary Bring on the Night a journalist called him Gordon, to which he replied, "My children call me Sting, my mother calls me Sting, who is this Gordon character?"[20] In 2011, he told Time that "I was never called Gordon. You could shout 'Gordon' in the street and I would just move out of your way."[21]

Other Languages
Afrikaans: Sting
Ænglisc: Sting
العربية: ستينغ (مغني)
asturianu: Sting
تۆرکجه: استینق
Bân-lâm-gú: Sting
беларуская: Стынг
български: Стинг
brezhoneg: Sting
català: Sting
čeština: Sting
dansk: Sting
Deutsch: Sting
eesti: Sting
Ελληνικά: Στινγκ
español: Sting
Esperanto: Sting
euskara: Sting
فارسی: استینگ
français: Sting
Gaeilge: Sting
galego: Sting
한국어: 스팅 (가수)
hrvatski: Sting
Bahasa Indonesia: Sting
íslenska: Sting
italiano: Sting
עברית: סטינג
ქართული: სტინგი
kaszëbsczi: Sting
қазақша: Стинг
Кыргызча: Стиң
latviešu: Sting
lietuvių: Sting
Limburgs: Sting
македонски: Стинг
მარგალური: სტინგი
مصرى: ستينج
Nederlands: Sting (artiest)
norsk: Sting
norsk nynorsk: Sting
occitan: Sting
oʻzbekcha/ўзбекча: Sting
polski: Sting
português: Sting (músico)
русский: Стинг
shqip: Sting
Simple English: Sting
slovenčina: Sting
slovenščina: Sting
ślůnski: Sting
српски / srpski: Стинг
srpskohrvatski / српскохрватски: Sting
suomi: Sting
svenska: Sting
татарча/tatarça: Стинг
ไทย: สติง
Türkçe: Sting
Türkmençe: Sting
українська: Стінг
vepsän kel’: Sting
Tiếng Việt: Sting (nhạc sĩ)
中文: 史汀