The End of R.E.M., and They Feel Fine

The band R.E.M. began playing together in Athens, Georgia in 1980. Over the last thirty-one years they have released 15 albums. They were inducted to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2007. I was a big fan, so I took note when I saw the announcement today on their website that they are calling it quits as a band. They write:

“To our Fans and Friends: As R.E.M., and as lifelong friends and co-conspirators, we have decided to call it a day as a band. We walk away with a great sense of gratitude, of finality, and of astonishment at all we have accomplished. To anyone who ever felt touched by our music, our deepest thanks for listening.” R.E.M.

Historical Note: R.E.M. was featured in the soundtrack of the infamous PBS “Battle for the Minds” documentary about The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary. You get 100 points if you can name the tune in the comments section.

5 Responses to The End of R.E.M., and They Feel Fine

  1. Matt September 21, 2011 at 5:09 pm #

    Losing My Religion?

  2. RD September 21, 2011 at 6:28 pm #

    What an amazing band! 31 years ago my sister was in Athens at UGA and she told me about this band. I remember going into Turtles Records and Tapes (yes, tapes!) and asking if they had any of their stuff. The guy behind the counter looked at me like I was a martian and that was in Atlanta. In ’81 they only had some bootleg tapes circulating and an EP but they owned Athens, GA!

  3. Paul September 21, 2011 at 7:03 pm #

    without seeing the documentary I can’t tell you. But if they used Losing My Religion, then they used the song completely out of context – it’s about a relationship where one is trying everything they can to get the other one to pay attention to them, and they’re so beside themselves that they’re questioning everything…they’re losing their religion over this person.

    (sorry, I might be the big jazz dork, but R.E.M. is one of my favorite bands of all time)

    Saw them a few times, have all the discs, and my band recorded a jazz-waltz version of Losing My Religion on our CD. This is a sad day for me. Especially because artistically, they were experiencing a bit of a renaissance. Their last two albums have been their best since New Adventures in Hi-Fi. Oh well.

  4. Adam Omelianchuk September 21, 2011 at 7:50 pm #

    Sad Professor?

  5. jonathan bennett September 22, 2011 at 9:47 am #

    it most definitely is ‘losing my religion’. i LOVED that documentary (watched it in Dr. Shawn Wright’s baptist history class). quite fascinating.

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