“Wrapped Around Your Finger” by The Police

The way this song is commonly understood – to be based on a troubled romance – seems to be a misinterpretation. What is apparent is that there is a power struggle involved, as the “spiteful”  singer (Sting) finds himself at the mercy of the person whose “finger” he is “wrapped around”, only later to prevail over this individual. And as the reader is probably already aware, being ‘wrapped around somebody’s finger’ is another way of saying that said person has control over you.

The singer is not overly fond of this person who exerts this control over him. This becomes evident when he more or less refers to this individual as Mephistopheles (the devil) in the second verse. And the track concludes with the singer rather gaining control over this individual and thus bragging that he now has this person wrapped around his finger.

Is this person the narrator’s love interest?

All things considered, it is not likely that Sting is singing to a love interest.  Rather it seems this song may be more literal than symbolic. The singer gave himself over to someone as a “young apprentice” in search of arcane knowledge. This person proved to be someone he could not look up to and indeed displayed a devilish nature. But ultimately the singer prevailed as in becoming dominant over this individual using what he learned from him. 

What Sting said about “Wrapped Around Your Finger”

The literalness of the lyrics become evident in light of Sting’s own words about the song’s real meaning. And what did he say about this song?

According to him, the track is based upon a “friend” of his who is also “a professional psychic and (his) tutor in tarot”. So this track reads like a tale literally derived from a chapter in the life of Sting. But who exactly he is addressing as his former master-turned-servant is up to speculation.

Lyrics of "Wrapped Around Your Fingers"

Facts about “Wrapped Around Your Finger”

  • Sting penned “Wrapped Around Your Finger” all by himself. He revealed that this song was written based on incidents or happenings in his life.  
  • Sting, together with fellow band members collaborated with English record engineer/producer, Hugh Padgham on the production of this new wave tune.
  • The Police recorded this tune in 1982 and released it in July 1983. The song was released as a single from the band’s fifth studio album entitled, Synchronicity. FYI, the monstrous hit “Every Breath You Take” was the first single to be released from Synchronicity.
  • The music video to the song was directed courtesy of the joint efforts from two veteran directors – Lol Creme and Kevin Godley.

Success on the global charts

“Wrap Around Your Finger” became a global hit. It ranked in the top 20 in over 10 nations, including the US and the UK, where it peaked at #8 and #7 respectively.


“Wrapped Around Your Finger” has been sampled in a host of tunes, including the 1998 song, “My First Love” by 8Ball. American rapper, Moneybagg Yo also sampled this track in his 2017 song, “In Da Air”

Several singers and singing groups have released various cover versions of this track. For instance, American singer, Tori Amos released a cover of the song in 1994. Canadian veteran singer, Greg Adams also performed a cover of the tune in 2002.

Other notable performers who have covered this single include the likes of:

  •  Underoath (in 2005)
  • Cyril Neville (in 2008)

Did “Wrapped Around Your Finger” win a Grammy?

The answer to the question above is no. But its album (Synchronicity) was nominated for Album of the Year at 1984’s Grammy Awards.

This is one of the most beloved live performances of “Wrapped Around Your Finger” by The Police.

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