The following article by Richard Brooks appeared in an April 2004 issue of The Sunday Times
Sting: the sex wasn't tantric, it was frantic...
EVERYONE knows that Sting practises epic bouts of tantric sex with his wife Trudie Styler because they have often boasted about it.
But it seems there has been some mistake. What he really meant was "frantic" sex.
In an interview to be broadcast next week on BBC1, Sting confesses that the whole story of how he used yoga to achieve prolonged states of ecstasy has been "a joke".
Asked by Jeremy Vine if he knows what tantric sex is, Sting, whose real name is Gordon Sumner, replies: "I haven't a clue."
Lest it be thought that this means he isn't as virile as he has been portrayed, Sting insists he has a lively sex life. "I have frantic sex, which is just as good as tantric sex."
The myth of Mr and Mrs Sumner's tantric sex has been traced to a dinner party they attended with the Irish rock stars Bob Geldof and Bono.
Sting has previously attributed his boast to a drunken night out, but he supplies the details for the first time. "It was simply me and Geldof bitching," said Sting, whose hits include 'Roxanne', 'Fields of Gold', and 'Don't Stand So Close to Me'.
"We were chatting and talking about having hours of sex. It then became really a joke which went around the world like a forest fire.
"Okay I had fun with it. Yeah, seven hours of sex every night. In fact it's more like four hours of begging, then a movie and then dinner."
The son of a milkman, Sting was born and bred on Tyneside and was a teacher before he broke into singing.
He admits that he was quite content for his prodigious libido to become a talking point. "I went along with it. It's fun, but it's all Geldof's fault."
Geldof has given his version of events in a separate interview with Vine. "We did have a few drinks together," concedes the former Boomtown Rat, now better known for his interest in Third World issues. "I said to Sting, 'Why would you want it for eight hours? It must be so boring.' She (Trudie) must have said, 'Get on with it'."
Then, according to Geldof, it was Sting who enthused about prolonged sex. To which Geldof replied: "Thirty seconds, that's enough, that'll do me."
Geldof, who is now the boyfriend of the French actress Jeanne Marine, remains adamant that it was Sting who first raised the issue of tantric sex. "But later he began to stare at me and said 'Shut up'."
Vine also taxes Sting, who wrote a song for the movie 'Cold Mountain', about a recent interview he gave to a French magazine in which he claimed that all he thought about was his wife's orgasms. But Sting, who has also acted in movies such as 'Stormy Monday' and 'Lock, Stock and Two Smoking Barrels', denied this was the case.
Styler, who now works as a movie producer and environmentalist, landed herself in hot water recently when talking about her sex life on American radio. Interviewed by the shock-jock Howard Stern, she said that she and her husband enjoyed wife-swapping and that she liked the attentions of women.
When Stern asked, "Are you guys still swinging?" Styler replied, "Yes, big time, honey."
Stern's sidekick on the programme, Robin Quivers, inquired if the 49-year-old mother of four knew what swinging meant. Styler responded, "Swinging is like wife-swapping, right? Of course we're doing it."
She went on to suggest that she and Sting would like to "do it" with Stern and his girlfriend. "I'm not sure which one I'd prefer," Styler said.
She also told Stern that she and her ex-Police frontman spiced up their love life by watching Sting at sex clubs meeting other women.
Stern asked Styler, who is a good friend of her Wiltshire neighbours Madonna and Guy Ritchie, if he could have tantric sex with her. "Of course you can," she replied. "But the thing about tantric sex is that it takes a long time."
Then, a couple of days after her interview on American radio, Styler came clean, admitting the whole thing had been a hoax. "I was joking for goodness sake," she revealed. "I said I was into boys, girls, cats, dogs. Yes, I love women, but I'm definitely a heterosexual." She then confirmed that she and her husband neither "swung" nor took drugs.
Now well into middle age, Mr and Mrs Sumner seem finally to have put to bed the stories about their lovemaking.
Quite why they allowed these urban myths to spread and are now so keen to deny them, probably only a sex counsellor or psychotherapist would know.
Geldof may have the answer: "It's like tantric shopping. You go out looking at the shop windows all day and buy nothing."
© The Sunday Times