The 80s Come Alive: Radio Free Europe (REM)

There was a time when REM were the kings of cool.  A huge college following, the odd appearance on some guy named Letterman’s late night TV show, and a singer who no one could quite understand what he was singing.  Of course, that was before $80 million major label contracts, seizure inducing duets with the gals from the B-52’s (Shiny Happy People, anyone?) and the departure of their unibrowed drummer.  Regardless of what they are today, at the start of their career REM released some amazing albums and songs on the I.R.S. label.  Not to say their time in the 90’s and the 00’s was a waste, since they did have some huge songs in that period.  For me, I like my Stipe with hair and my Buck with a Rickenbacker.  

From the British program The Tube.  ‘Radio Free Europe’, circa 1983.

About Jay Moon

Freelance writer guy. My ears love music. I'm a transplant recipient (October/2015), so I also give talks to the masses about that entire experience.

Posted on September 12, 2010, in The 80s and tagged , . Bookmark the permalink. 3 Comments.

  1. Agreed! I like my Stipes with hair too!
    What the heck happened to R.E.M. that they’ve become so irrelevant?! It’s a shame! They were awesome, almost U2 status at 1 point!

  2. Stipe actually thanked me with a handshake and a look straight in the eyes, for coming to one of their shows. Anyway…
    The original video was filmed in Rev. Howard Finster’s backyard.
    They used some of the footage in “Athens GA, Inside and Out”
    Rev. Finster saw his dead sister in a dream, she was on a staircase leading to heaven and she told him to “paint sacred art”.
    He is best known for The Talking Heads album cover art for “Little Creatures”, he thought their name was The Peeping Heads.
    The REM cover for the EP “Chronic Town” was taken in the good Rev. backyard as well…here’s his backyard, with REM wandering around:

  3. I still love this band! Nightswimming is one of my all-time favourite songs by any band.

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