Stewart Copeland

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Stewart Copeland
A photo of Stewart Copeland performing in 2008.
Origins Alexandria, Virginia
Genre Jazz
Reggae rock
Pop music
New Wave
Rock music
Reggae
Associated acts The Police
Curved Air
Klark Kent
Oysterhead
Gizmo
Years active 1975 - present
Label(s) A&M Records
Koch Records
Official website stewartcopeland.net
Important fansites Too Kool To Kalypso

Stewart Copeland is an American musician, composer, and filmmaker. He is perhaps best known as the drummer for the band The Police. His career spans numerous decades and he has been a prolific soundtrack composer for video games, television series, and movies. Stewart has an avid and active fandom and is also notable for his interaction with that fandom, through his official website as well as at live events and concerts.

The Artist

Born July 16, 1952, Stewart is the youngest of four children of CIA officer Miles Copeland, Jr. and Scottish archaeologist Lorraine Adie. Stewart spent much of his youth growing up in the Middle East, including Cairo, Egypt and Beirut, Lebanon. He started playing the drums at age twelve, and later the family moved to England where he attended Millfield from 1967 - 1969. He attended college in California before returning to England, where he worked as a road manager for Joan Armatrading and then Curved Air, which he would later join and record two albums with in 1975 and 1976.

Sensing the death of progressive rock and the explosion of the punk music scene, he set out to capitalize on the trend and was the founding member of The Police. The band would become one of the most successful musical acts of the late 1970s - early 1980s. After the band's dissolution, Stewart would set out on a prolific solo career of film and television soundtrack work (including music for The Equalizer, Dead Like Me, and "Wall Street") and classical composition including opera, ballet, and orchestral music. He would also record and tour with several other bands including Animal Logic, Oysterhead and Gizmo.

In 2006, he released "Everyone Stares: The Police Inside Out", his film about his years with The Police assembled from the Super 8 movies he recorded while with the band. Some regard the release of this film as one of the factors which contributed to the announcement that the band would go on a reunion tour, which ended up spanning from May 2007 - August 2008. Since the end of the reunion tour, Stewart has resumed composing new music, including the score for the upcoming production Ben Hur Live. He also has an autobiography scheduled for release in September 2009.

Partial discography

With Curved Air:

With The Police:

  • Outlandos d'Amour (1978)
  • Reggatta de Blanc (1979)
  • Zenyattà Mondatta (1980)
  • Ghost in the Machine (1981)
  • Synchronicity (1983)

With Animal Logic:

  • Animal Logic (1989)
  • Animal Logic II(1991)

With Oysterhead:

  • The Grand Pecking Order (2001)

As Klark Kent:

  • Klark Kent - (1980)
  • Kollected Works - (1995)

Solo:

  • The Rhythmatist - (1985)
  • The Equalizer & Other Cliffhangers (1988)
  • The Stewart Copeland Anthology - (2007)

Soundtracks:

  • Rumble Fish - (1983)
  • Wall Street/Talk Radio - (1987)
  • Rapa Nui - (1994)
  • The Leopard Son - (1996)

The Fandom

Stewart Copeland has an active fandom both inclusive and somewhat separate from fans of The Police. Today that fandom is largely based around his official website and its associated message board forum.

One of the largest projects undertaken by Stewart Copeland's fandom was The Flag. Originally created to help a fan find other fans in a crowd, it became a symbol of support for Stewart which was passed around and signed by fans at concerts throughout The Police Reunion Tour in 2007 - 2008. The Flag eventually found its way into Stewart's possession at the final concert on August 7, 2008.

Many fans of Stewart Copeland consider themselves fans of the Copeland family in general, including Ian Copeland and Miles Copeland III. This "Copeland fandom" evolved as a branch of Police fandom in the 1980s and involved many who would identify themselves as the Snarks.

Terminology

Below is a list of terms and their definitions that are used in this fan community.

  • Snarks - Snarks were the name used by "original" Stewart Copeland fans in the 1980s and 1990s. Pecos is the Queen of Snarks.
  • Nutters - The term used by Stewart Copeland fans who participate on his official website forum.

Nutters have developed a very long and lengthy list of terminology used within the community, which is detailed in their own Kopelandik Dictionary A few of the most notable terms include:

  • Copelandia (n.) - 1. another name for stewartcopeland.net; 2. the land over which Stewart has complete monarchal dominion; 3. virtual home of Nutters worldwide
  • Doily Shirt (n.) – unpopular wardrobe choice of Stewart during later shows of the Police reunion tour (also known as Stargate shirt, Tron shirt) (ref. http://img224.imageshack.us/img224/1/hpim0293ib1.jpg) (att. DirtyMartini)
  • Floozie (n.) - a non-groupie female who likes more than Stewart's music and desires to squirt him with orangina and proceed to lick it off (Floozie names usually rhyme with Floozie, i.e. boozie, snoozie, choozie, kazoozie); Origin: the verse in Klark Kent's song "Too Kool To Kalypso", which states, "but this Floozie had no shame - libido torpedo"
  • Il Duce (n.) - nickname for Sting (see also Stingo, Gordo, Newcastle Bard, Petulant Pansy, King of Pain)
  • Malgordo (n.) – 1. loosely translated as “Bad Sting” - imaginary Italian town that appeared in Schmaffy’s dream as the answer to the question, “What small Italian town did Stewart say he wanted to vacation in and go skiing?”; 2. intended capital city of Copelandia
  • Stewart Girls (n.) – the derogatory way Sting's fans refer to the Floozies
  • Stewartness (n.) – 1. that which reeks of Stewart Copeland (literally or metaphorically); 2. the state of euphoria and joy exhibited by the Maestro during an intense performance related action, as evidenced during “Next to You” at the second CHA-waii performance on 2/17/2008 (ref. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FPSBVLuIsm0) (att. copeland_girl5)
  • Stewpid (adj.) – 1. term to describe a Stewart Copeland fan by Sting's fans; 2. state in which a normal human being is transformed by supposedly excessive loyalty, love, and respect for the Man, thus losing the gift of objectivity (see also Stewpidness)
  • Stewpidness (n.) - condition caused by loss of objectivity due to supposedly excessive loyalty, love, and respect for the Man (see also Stewpid)
  • Team Italia (n.) – collective name given to Giovanni, Eugenio, and the rest of the behind-the-scenes SC.net crew

Timeline

Below is a partial timeline of events that took place in this fan community.

1970s

This section needs more information.

1980s

This section needs more information.

1990s

This section needs more information.

2000s

This section needs more information.

2001

2003

2004

  • On December 7, 2004, the launch of a new Stewart Copeland fansite, www.stewartcopeland.co.uk, was announced on Ask Uncle Ian. The site was run by Wombat and Echidna, two rather mysterious new figures to the fandom who were surmised to be regular posters at AUI.[3][4] The site, which was very professionally put together, was well received by fans for its video, image, and informational detail. The site was so well done that some wondered if it should not become the official Stewart site, or if Wombat should be recruited instead to create an official Police site.[5] Of some confusion to fans, however, was the section of the site entitled Echidna's World, which featured satirical articles, fake interviews, and mock news reports, some of which was so well written people believed they were real. One such article was an exclusive on "The Copeland Chronicles."[6] Extracts from this supposed-to-be-published diary were posted to the site, such as this one posted on August 17, 2005:
Diary Entry - May 1st 1983. Dear Diary well today is the day that we once again leave the house and climb into the juggernaut parked in the drive known as the the Police album. I have a very busy week ahead with a crazy hectic schedule where I must pay lip service to the worlds Press and pretend to look like I actually still like Sting. I'm still emotionally drained after last weeks crisis meeting with the band and record company executives where I tried to persuade them that "Mother" would be a far better choice of a single instead of Every Breath You Take. Those who know me will testify as to what a fair person I am and I showed that by telling Sting that EBYT would make the perfect B side. Alas it was not to be and my efforts were in vain - EBYT will be the first single, however I am confident I can get "Miss Gradenko released as the second single. Its going to very tough spending this week talking about EBYT when my heart is really in "Mother" and I know that although he doesn't show it Andy is secretly very upset. I remember back in 1978 when I spent a whole month pleading with Miles not to present "Roxanne" to A&M but instead play them "Be My Girl Sally" which I felt, and still do is the perfect four minute pop song. I mean can you seriously imagine that in twenty years time anyone will still be listening to or even wanting to listen to "Roxanne"???

2005

  • On February 7, 2005, the messageboard forum was opened at the Stewart Copeland Official Site.[7] This messageboard would become the primary on-line community for Stewart fans on-line, particularly after Stewart himself registered on the board on March 11 of that year and occasionally participated in the discussion. (sockii)
  • On April 28, 2005, the band Sparky's Flaw released a song entitled "Stewart Copeland".[8]

2006

  • On January 21, 2006, The Police were photographed together in Park City, Utah where Copeland was premiering his documentary on the band, "Everyone Stares: The Police Inside Out". Some point to this event as the turning point for when a reunion tour became possible.
  • In February of 2006, both Stewart and Ian communicated with fans on Ask Uncle Ian confirming that Ian was fighting melanoma.[9]
  • In early 2006, Stewart appeared as a judge on the BBC reality series Just the Two of Us.[10]. He blogged several times about the experience on his official website forum, including being asked to "cause trouble" on the bench and play up his personality for drama.[11] He also mentioned cruising the internet to get reaction from viewers to his appearances, stating:
Most of those millions of people who watch the show, have never heard of my investiture as a Hero Of The Pizzica – nor of The Police for that matter. On this site there is the occasional post asking: “Who is that American guy with the glasses?” They think I’m nuts, but they’re laughing…
On my own site, members are confused at first. What is their tortured artist doing on such a schlocky show? A few words of explanation from me quickly dispels their concern and they get into the cheerful frivolity of the mission. A few of them even get into caring who wins!

2007

Stewart Copeland poses for a photo with fans backstage at a Police concert in Dallas, Texas on June 26, 2007.

2008

  • On March 26, 2008, a large group of Stewart Copeland fans (the nutters) convened in Savannah, Georgia for "An Evening With Stewart Copeland", which consisted of a performance, Q&A session, and screening of Copeland's film "Everyone Stares". Copeland spent much of the evening acknowledging his fans who were there and who had largely bought up tickets in the first few rows of the theater. He mentioned the Flag and other things related to his messageboard.[16] On April 1, 2008, Jim Reed published a review of the event in the Savannah Connect which was perceived by some nutters as being critical of their behavior as well as Stewart's focus upon them during the event.[17],[18] After being bombarded with comments and criticisms from those who had been in attendance at the event, Reed altered some content within the review and also posted a long response defending his article and accusing the fans who replied to him of having their "panties in a wad" and of being "overzealous champions".
  • On July 13, 2008, it was announced on Stewart Copeland's website that he would be giving away a "strictly limited" number of tickets to the final concert to members who could answer a trivia question.[19],[20] ThePolice.com and Sting.com announced a similar contest as well.
  • Winners of Copeland's ticket giveaway were revealed on July 24, 2008[21] and many were shocked and delighted when the list of winners revealing themselves reached close to 100. On July 26, 2008, actual seat locations were revealed[22], with about 20 individuals out of that 100 receiving Snake Pit tickets, the rest 100-level seats. A few ThePolice.com and Sting.com contest winners received tickets on the 100 level and in the Snake Pit; others were located on the 200 level and only about 20-30 revealed themselves to have won on the messageboards, leaving some to wonder how many had actually been given out. Some fans were upset by the allocation of tickets from Stewart, noting that it did not seem "random" who won pit tickets and who didn't, leading to some resentment and hard feelings.[23],[24]
  • At the final concert on August 8, 2008, many fans wore homemade t-shirts made specifically for the last show, a frequent motto on them reading "I guess this is our last goodbye", a line from the song "Can't Stand Losing You." Members of Stewart Copeland's website who had won free tickets circulated small green signs, one side of which showed the Flag/Stewart Copeland logo, the other which read "THANK YOU". These signs can be clearly seen flashing from the front of the pit at several points during the Best Buy live broadcast of the encore set.[25],[26], [27] Before the encores, while the video screen showed Sting backstage having his much-reviled beard shaved[28], Stewart Copeland appeared on stage with the Flag at last in his possession, having been passed to a crew member before the encores from the front of the pit. The Flag was placed upon a special rig to fly on stage for the end of the concert[29]. Photos later posted revealed the Flag finally "in retirement" at Copeland's home studio.[30]

2009

In 2009, Stewart Copeland released his autobiography "Strange Things Happen: A Life with The Police, Polo, and Pygmies".[31] Fan reaction, while overall positive, did contain some criticism of his lack of coverage of the early Police years, as well as the chapter in the book about The Flag.[32]

Kerfluffles

Sting fans vs. Stewart fans

There have been numerous kerfluffles and skirmishes through the years between Sting fans and Stewart Copeland fans. (See The Police kerfluffles for more information.) In particular, members of StingUs and the Stewart Copeland Official Site and their respective forums have at times come to argue over the relative friendliness of their respective forums towards fans of the other artist.

Disaster Gig

On May 31, 2007, Stewart Copeland posted a blog to his messageboard entitled "OUR FIRST DISASTER GIG!"[19] This tongue-in-cheek report jokingly reported on problems they'd had encountered during early tour performance in Vancouver on May 28, 2007. The story was well received by fans on the website, but picked up by Reuters on June 1, much to the concern of many fans as the story spread wildly and was misquoted through the press.[20] Fans feared (correctly) that this "mistake" on Stewart's part would mean he would not post publicly on the board with the frequency that he used to. Throughout the rest of 2007, hardly a concert review or other article on the band was published that did not refer to Stewart and the "Disaster Gig" blog, which by December of 2007 had received over 125,000 hits on the board.

Influential fanworks

One of the most well-known and influential fanworks associated with Stewart Copeland is The Flag.

Fansites

The primary fansite utilized by Stewart Copeland fans is the Stewart Copeland Official Site. Other sides of note are:

Fan-fiction

Most Stewart Copeland fan-fiction written today is slash in nature, and much of it is shared in locked LiveJournal communities such as hungry_4_you or membership-restricted sites such as RockFic.

Sidewinder is the primary active writer of Stewart Copeland fan-fiction, both in association with The Police and in crossover stories with other bands such as the Foo Fighters. She has been writing Stewart Copeland-related fan-fiction since 2003. The most notable of sidewinder's Stewart Copeland-centric fic is Sex and the Single Drummer.

Little evidence is documented about the existence of Stewart Copeland fan-fiction previous to the 2000s. There is some knowledge of drawerfic existing and perhaps being exchanged among some fans, but very little direct evidence of it. Some Police-related fiction had been published in fanzines in the 1990s with the character names and specifics altered such that only those "in the know" would recognize the source, similar to the Led Zeppelin fiction written as Tris & Alex.

Fanart

This section needs more information.

Fanvids

This section needs more information.

Fandom members

Sockii in typical nutter "floozie" attire: tube socks, Krypton green shoes, short shorts, and sc.net logo t-shirt.

For a directory of fans of this artist, see Category:Stewart Copeland fans.

Fandom size

As of August 29, 2009:

External links

Official links

Other links

See also

Sources

Below is a partial list of articles and academic sources to help you continue to learn about this community.

This section needs more information.


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