Stewart Copeland: Raised to Be a Big Band White Jazz Drummer

The Police Co-Founder and Drummer, Stewart Copeland, Explains His Journey from Rock to Opera
by Steve Schonberg
Posted: 01/15/2016

“It’s kind of a circle,” Copeland said about the journey that led him to compose for orchestras. “The first musical impressions you get from your parents is what they’re listening to, and then when you get to be a teenager you find your own sound and your own stance and your own hairdo, and you go for it,” he said.

“In my case, the music that my parents were listening to was Stravinsky, Debussy, and also my father raised me to be a big band white jazz drummer. He raised me to be Buddy Rich; he had me in lessons from the start, which cured me of jazz, but in fact, the Stravinsky and the Debussy stuck.”

“That music of the big orchestra doing dramatic things, very powerful, very rhythmic [things], really stuck,” he said.

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