Fall Out

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For other uses, see Fallout (disambiguation).
"Fall Out"
1977 record sleeve
Single by The Police
B-side "Nothing Achieving"
Released May 1, 1977
Format 7" single
Recorded February 12, 1977 at Pathway Studios
Genre Punk rock
Length 2:03
Label Illegal
Writer(s) Stewart Copeland
Producer(s) Stewart Copeland, Bazza (Barry Hammond)
The Police singles chronology
"Fall Out"
(1977)
"Roxanne"
(1978)
1979 Re-issue cover

"Fall Out" was the first single released by The Police. It was originally released in May 1977 and then re-released in 1979. "Fall Out" was a 7" single with "Nothing Achieving" on its B-side. Although it did not appear on any studio albums, it has appeared on a number of compilation and live albums including Message in a Box: The Complete Recordings, The Police and Live!.

Background[edit]

"Fall Out" was written by drummer Stewart Copeland, and was one of the first songs he presented to vocalist and bassist Sting when The Police were forming.

"This was one of the first songs Stewart played me. What they [the songs] lacked in sophistication they made up for in energy. I just went along with them and sang them as hard as I could. No, it wasn't false punk. I mean what's a real punk? Our first record was entirely a tribute to Stewart's energy and focus. The band wouldn't have happened without him."

—Sting, 'Message In A Box' Liner Notes, 1993[1]

The single was recorded before the Police had done any live performances,[2] using a budget of £150 borrowed from Paul Mulligan,[2] and is the only Police recording featuring original guitarist Henry Padovani. Due to nervousness in the studio, Padovani only played the guitar solos for both tracks, with Copeland playing the other guitar parts.[3]

The b-side, "Nothing Achieving" was written by Stewart Copeland and his brother Ian, with Ian being responsible for most of the lyrics. Both tracks were produced by Stewart Copeland and "Bazza", which was the nickname of engineer Barry Hammond. The actual packaging of the 7" singles was done by Copeland and Sting.

Release[edit]

"Fall Out" was released on the Illegal Records label, part of the Faulty Products group of companies owned by Copeland's brother Miles. Sting has cited Mick Jagger's review of the single in Sounds as contributor to its success, saying, "we had a coup when Mick Jagger reviewed it in a music weekly called Sounds."[3] Copeland estimates that the single sold mostly because it was a part of the overall punk movement; the band appears in the cover photograph in clothes that were fashionable at the time and fans of the punk movement were buying any punk single that came out.

"It sold purely on the strength of the cover, because of the fashion at the time. Punk was in and it was one of the first punk records - and there weren't very many to choose from. The average punk had every punk record that was available and when the next one came out which was the Police record, he bought that, too. But still I think it was a good record, so it did more than the average punk single."

—Stewart Copeland, Melody Maker, 9/1979[1]

It failed to chart on its original release, but when re-released in 1979 it made number 47 on the UK Singles Chart, two months after "Message in a Bottle" reached number one.[4]

Track listing[edit]

UK 7" vinyl single
  1. "Fall Out" (Stewart Copeland)
  2. "Nothing Achieving" (Stewart Copeland, Ian Copeland)

Personnel[edit]

Charts[edit]

Chart (1979) Peak
position
UK Singles Chart 47[4]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b "'Fall Out' / 'Nothing Achieving'". sting.com. 
  2. ^ a b Sutcliffe, Phil & Fielder, Hugh (1981). L'Historia Bandido. London and New York: Proteus Books. ISBN 0-906071-66-6. Page 41.
  3. ^ a b Sutcliffe, Phil (1993). "The B-sides and Other Obscure Releases". In Message in a Box: The Complete Recordings (pp.57-59) [Boxed set booklet]. A&M Records Ltd.
  4. ^ a b The Police in the UK Charts, The Official Charts.

External links[edit]