Sting took some time out of his concert stop at New York’s Cathedral Church of St. John the Divine to talk to Larry King about his Christmas memories, and the mystique of winter. Sting will also performed on the Larry King Live (LKL) Christmas music show, to be aired on 23 December.
Here are the 5 questions he asked:
LKL Blog: What are your fondest childhood holiday memories?
Sting: I think when it snowed it made my little gray industrial town into this magical landscape. And I used to work with my daddy on the milk grounds, so we were the first people at 5 in the morning to disturb the snow. So that memory for me was magical, even though it was cold, and after a few hours I was pretty miserable. When we first went out there it was great. I still love the snow.
LKL Blog: What do you like to do to celebrate the holidays now?
Sting: My greatest Christmas gift is for my six children to come home, and we sit around the fire, and we talk about what’s happened to us in the year, and what we’ve done, and what we hope to achieve next year. Just sitting with them, with the fire on, and a few dogs around, that’s the greatest gift I could ever have.
LKL Blog: Why did you decide to do an album centered on the winter season?
Sting: The record company said to me, “Why don’t you do a Christmas record,” and I said, “I’m not really into Frosty the Snowman, I don’t really like Rudolph, the Red Nosed Reindeer, and I’m not that into Santa Clause.” So I said why don’t we consider doing an album about the winter, because it’s a very rich season. It’s full of imagery, ghosts and spirits, and magical stories. So I said let me do that. So I spent 6 months doing research, looking at songs from many centuries, many different kind of genres – folk songs, classical songs, sacred songs. We ended up with “If On A Winter’s Night” and it’s doing incredibly well, much better than anyone expected. I’m thrilled.
LKL Blog: What do you like to do in winter?
Sting: Well, I ski, I snowboard, I love to walk. I like to walk with my dogs in the snow. I like the winter. It’s a season that’s important for reflection. Animals hibernate, humans reflect.
LKL Blog: And are you now sporting the beard for winter warmth?
Sting: Last year I was in an opera in Paris, and I was the star, and I played Dionysis, the Greek God, so they made me get this beard, and I kind of liked it. My wife breeds Irish wolfhounds, so it’s not so far removed from the dogs, so it gets me more affection.