A Perfect Circle old drummer Josh Freese reveals his thoughts about Sting. He also remembers “You haven’t even heard me play, man,” from Sting’s comment.
Josh Freese (Joshua Ryan Freese) is an American drummer, multi-instrumentalist, songwriter, and composer. We already knew from A Perfect Circle band. He also plays with the Vandals and Devo, Guns N’ Roses, Nine Inch Nails, Weezer, and Sting whom he toured and recorded in 2005. He works with Sting between the 2004-2005 tour and then returned in 2016.
During an interview on Drinks With Johnny, A Perfect Circle old drummer Josh Freese recalls Sting:
“I will say, for being a guy that has done as much great stuff as he’s done. And as busy as he is, he’s made as much money as he’s made, and sold as many records as he’s sold… he’s surprisingly down to earth and cool. And he’s a musician. When I met him in 2004, I just got off the road, being on tour with A Perfect Circle for a while; I was home and his manager called and said: ‘He’s gonna be looking for a new drummer soon, and we recommended you, and he wants to go out with kind of a stripped-down band.’
“This is kind of what happened, it kind of led into what ended up being The Police reunion in 2007, I guess. This is around 2004 when he’d just been on the road for a long time with a big, giant band; a percussionist, maybe two keyboard players, background singers, this huge 10-12 people in the band, and he really wanted to scale it back and kind of do something a little more raw and simple. And he wanted to do a tour going out with something he’d never done before, which is just two guitars, drums, and him on bass. So he had some people around him saying, ‘This is the guy you got to get.’
“And so they called me and said, ‘You want to go down and kind of meet him? He’s playing Thursday night’ – or Friday night – ‘Would you come down to soundcheck and meet him and kind of talk with him and see how it goes?’ I’m like, ‘Sure, great. OK, cool.’ So I went down there, I figured they would bring me through really quick and I would meet him.
Josh Freese also added:
“You know, being so cool, it’s like, ‘Hey man, let’s walk over to catering.’ We walked over to catering and he handed me a plate; we’re standing in line with the road crew, the truck drivers, the carpenters, and he’s like… We talked about songwriting, we talked about jazz, we talked about punk-rock, we talked about all these things. We kind of wrapped it up in about a half an hour, and he’s like, ‘Cool. Well, I hope to see you at rehearsals in February.’ Also, I’m thinking, ‘You haven’t even heard me play, man.’ He had such a good gut feeling – his label guy at the time, who’s now his manager. Martin Kierszenbaum wasn’t his manager at the time. But Martin was always kind of in his inner circle and a close confidant that he trusted and respected.
And so Martin was the one, he used to come to see me play; I didn’t know Martin well, but I’ve met him once or twice, he used to come to see me play with Paul Westerberg for The Replacements. So he was telling Sting, ‘Oh, this is the guy you got to get. Just trust me, this is the guy you got to get.’ So, luckily, Martin doesn’t really stir wrong too often, and that’s what I think he’s now his manager.”