Every Breath You Take? Not Your Average Love Song.

Every Breath You Take

It’s a love song, no? It’s about missing his lover, no? It’s beautiful and should be played at weddings, no?

“No” is the right answer.


“Every Breath You Take”, by the rock group, The Police, and written by Sting (it’s cool to have only one name) is one of the greatest stalker songs of all time, but most people think it’s a love song. It’s not. I’ve heard of people playing it at their wedding, but that has to be because they have never listened to the words.

“Every breath you take

Every move you make

Every bond you break

Every step you take

I’ll be watching you”

If you aren’t paying much attention, maybe those lines don’t tell you that this is a stalker song, but the “bonds you break” should have been a clue. Your love might tell you that they love watching you, hearing you breathe, watching you walk, but if they also keep track of the “bonds” you break, that’s a bad thing.

“O can’t you see, You belong to me

How my poor heart aches with every step you take”

This is another clue that this song isn’t about love. If they were together, why would his heart ache? He’s watching her, but from a distance.

“Since you’ve gone I been lost without a trace

I dream at night I can only see your face

I look around but it’s you I can’t replace

I feel so cold and I long for your embrace

I keep crying baby, baby please”

Sting is clearly yearning for a lost love, but in a rather unhealthy way. He’s crying at night instead of moving on. That’s a tell tale sign of a future stalker.

The song’s sound is pretty, it invokes pleasure and love. It’s beautifully sung by Sting and I think that is why people miss out on the lyrics. The song was the biggest song of 1983, was a 1984 Grammy winner and is #84 on Rolling Stone’s Top 500 Songs of All Time (it’s a good tune, but it’s not that good). The next time you hear the song, listen carefully and you’ll catch the stalker tone of the song. Then you can be better informed the next time someone suggests the song is a love song.

The all time stalker song is still the Beatles’ “You Better Run For Your Life”, which I’ve written about before.

Kelly Burke, master attorney, former district attorney and magistrate judge, is engaged in private practice. He focuses on personal injury cases and corporate litigation. These articles are not designed to give legal advice, but are designed to inform the public about how the law affects their daily lives. Contact Kelly atkelly@burkelasseterllc.com to comment on this article or suggest articles about the law that you’d like to see.

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