Sting’s stage name started as a “joke.”
The 70-year-old rock star – whose real name is Gordon Matthew Thomas Sumner – was given his famous moniker as a joke by a trombone player in an old band when he complained about a song and began to wear a black-and-yellow t-shirt, seemingly to resemble a bee.
He said: “He made me sing a song which was awful. So, in protest I began to wear a black and yellow top. He started to call me Sting as a joke.”
However, the ‘When We Dance’ hitmaker went on to explain that he is “grateful” for the stage name because it speeds up the process of signing autographs.
He told the Daily Star newspaper: “I’m grateful for it now as when you have to sign something, it’s short!”
It comes shortly after Sting – who shot to fame as part of the rock band The Police, before enjoying success as a solo artist – became one of the latest big-name stars to sell his back catalogue, following in the footsteps of Bob Dylan and Bruce Springsteen.
Sting handed over his discography to Universal Music Group for a reported $300 million.
He said: “It felt natural to unite everything in one trusted home. It is absolutely essential to me that my career’s body of work has a home where it is valued and respected. Not only to connect with long-time fans in new ways but also to introduce my songs to new audiences, musicians and generations.”
Sir Lucian Grainge, the chairman and chief executive of Universal Music, was delighted to have secured the deal.
He said: “We are honoured that by choosing Universal for his music publishing, Sting’s entire body of work as a songwriter and recording artist – from The Police to his solo work – will all be within the Universal family.”