"Message in a Bottle" is a 1979 song by English rock band The Police, from their second album, Reggatta de Blanc.

The song is ostensibly about a story of a castaway on an island, who sends out a message in a bottle to seek love. A year later, he has not received any sort of response, and despairs, thinking he is destined to be alone. The next day, he sees "a hundred billion bottles" on the shore, finding out that there are more people like him out there. The Police debuted the song on live television on the BBC's Rock Goes to College, filmed at Hatfield Polytechnic College in Hertfordshire, England.[1]The Police donated all money earned from the show to the school.

The single was The Police's first number one hit in the United Kingdom,[2] but only reached number 74 in the United States. An alternate "Classic Rock" mix is available on Every Breath You Take: The Classics. This is Sting's favourite song as confessed to Jools Holland of BBC fame.[citation needed]

The Police performed at Live Earth, a 2007 charity concert to raise awareness of global warming and other environmental hazards and performed "Message in a Bottle" as the US finale, with John Mayer playing guitar with Andy Summers (who described the track as a personal favourite in his book One Train Later) and Kanye Westperforming a rap verse over the chorus of the song.

Rolling Stone magazine ranked it number 65 on their list of the "100 Greatest Guitar Songs of All Time".


 [hide*1 Samples and covers

Samples and covers[edit]Edit

Appearances in other media[edit]Edit

Track listing[edit]Edit

  1. "Message in a Bottle" (Edit) – 3:50
  2. "Landlord" – 3:09


Chart (1979–80) Peak


Australian Kent Music Report[5] 5
Austrian Top 40[6] 24
Belgian Singles Chart 6
Canadian RPM Top Singles[7] 2
Dutch Singles Chart[6] 2
French Singles Chart 3
German Singles Chart[6] 35
Irish Singles Chart 1
Italian Singles Chart 21
New Zealand Singles Chart[6] 11
South African Singles Chart 5
Spanish Singles Chart 1
Swedish Singles Chart[6] 20
UK Singles Chart[2] 1
US Billboard Hot 100[8] 74

Year-end chart[edit]Edit

Chart (1979) Peak


UK Singles Chart 13
Dutch Top 40 37
Belgian VRT Top 30 53
Chart (1980) Peak


Spanish Singles Chart 6
Canadian RPM Top Singles 34
Australian Kent Music Report 40
Italian Singles Chart 80


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