In the world of rock and roll, writing your own stuff isn’t exactly anything new. Ever since the days of the Beatles striking out on their own, it’s almost been expected for a band to write their own material, or at the very least have one member singled out as the main songwriter. Then again, it’s never a bad thing to let go of the reins every once in a while.
Even if these acts normally have one songwriter at the helm, these were songs that were written by someone else entirely. Even though it would be easy to just assemble a bunch of B-sides for a list like this, most of these are considered fairly well known hits as well, up there with some of the best stuff that these acts have ever done.
It doesn’t even have to be the whole song either, with some of these collaborators working almost like songwriting doctors, taking the basics of what each of these bands had and turning it into something that you would have never expected, from ballads to some of the more intense sides of these acts’ discography. They might not sound exactly as you would expect them to all the time, but there’s nothing wrong with these bands stretching their artistic muscles every now and again. There was some fresh blood here, and these acts were more than willing to play the game.
10. On Any Other Day - The Police
As punk was slowly turning into new wave, the Police seemed to have their finger on the pulse of where rock would be heading in the next decade. Just like other alternative-leaning punk acts like The Clash, they weren't afraid to flirt with different genres when they felt like it, dipping their toes into reggae before getting their sound coated in synths as the '80s turned a corner. One thing you could expect is Sting to write a brilliant melody over the top though...most of the time.
When the band were still trying to figure their sound out, Reggatta de Blanc marked a bit of an experimental period for them, where soon to be classics like Message in a Bottle were put alongside their more adventurous side like The Bed's Too Big Without You. Since there was still some camaraderie in the band, they also took the back half of the record to play with their own dynamic, with Stewart Copeland writing and singing the song On Any Other Day.
Granted, it's not like this is the answer to Every Breath You Take. For the most part, Stewart was content to save most of his songs for his own solo projects like Klark Kent, and even on the recording you can hear him putting down the song he's singing by prefacing it with "you want something corny?." Regardless of how cheesy the lyrics may be and how outdated some of the problems that the character in the song are, this is still a nice little snapshot into what the Police's world was like before they became global superstars.