…my gratefulness flows to you for sharing your shimmering truth and beauty…peace and love…bcg…topia, earth…
After over thirty years, R.E.M. have called it a day. Submit your thanks, your memories, your photos, your videos here.
What if you did? What if you walk?
What if you tried to get off, baby?
THANKS R.E.M FOR DOING WHAT YOU DID & DOING IT SO WELL
I’ll always be grateful I had your music in my world xxx
I graduated from high school in 1986, and by then I was a big REM fan. There were tons of fans in the L.A. area, but not too many in my neighborhood. I may have been your biggest fan in 90004, at least in the 1980s. Anyway, your music gave me hope, gave me pleasure, and as a son of Latino immigrants, helped me understand a part of American culture that, to me, seemed exotic. Eventually, I saw you perform in the gym of UCSD in 1987. What a blast! Then I saw you perform in Seattle in 2000. Another blast of joy! Of course, I bought all your albums, and introduced your music to some of my friends. Thank you. I wish you all the best
Thank you, michael, peter, bill and Mike for great music and i wish all the best for your life..
It’s always a sad day when one of the icons of your youth ends. I’ve never seen them live, but I do have many, many fond memories of the music through the years.
Thanks, and good luck!
1,000,000 playing on warm summer Portland afternoons… being shown Murmur and told “you gotta hear this!” … Lifes Rich Pageant walking home in Juneau rain, Document riding the ferry to Seattle at Christmas… Losing My Religion when my best friend marries … Be Mine when my own life takes a new turn …then adjusting to it with Around the Sun, Accelerate and Collapse Into Now…
Thanks for the music! A constant thread throughout the years. All the best in what comes next for you.
That was the day I stood outside of the gates at Jones Beach Theatre for many an hour, waiting for Micheal to drive by (of course he would. duh), so I could tell him I made something for him.
Many an hour passed that day. Seagulls pecked at my box of goods. Sunburn spread on my left shoulder - yes, just the left one. But I waited. Five? hours in, a lovely Australian lady, GC, joined me out there. We were the only two. We talked. and talked. and bonded. She was like a mother to me out there, convincing me that it was completely logical for me to be standing there with a big ass box of offerings for the band members. She understood my quest, for she, too, had adored REM for many years before I was even born. Two? more hours in, REM’s head of security, a New Zealander, passed us outside the metal gates. He had heard GC’s accent, and they had a chat. Two of a kind, he said they were, over here on the other side of the world. They were instant buddies, and I was jealous. Then. he. asked. the. most. amazing. unbelievable. question to GC. He asked her if she wanted to go into soundcheck. Gah. GAHGAHGAHGAH. I remember standing behind GC, and subtly pointly to myself as in, ‘me too, don’t forget me too??????????????????????????????’ (but totally subtle, of course. ha.) GC, she was such a dear, she pointed to me and asked if I could go in too. Mr Head of Security looked warily at my box, and with raised eyebrow, he asked what might I have in there. Just some things I made for the band, I assured. And we walked! With Mr New Zealand! Once considered ‘The Lurkers’ (me and GC), we were now, ‘The Walkers With REM’s Head Of Security!’ Through the gates (those gates - I was finally on the other side of those damn gates!), up the gravel road, into the arena, and heart was pumping. For there were the band members. On the stage. REM. Yes. The 3D versions! I. was. enthralled. And pretty much out of my body. Fortunately, I made it up to the front, and into my(!!!) seat without tripping…or screaming….or, you know, anything that would bring attention to me. They sang Losing My Religion…then memory eludes me…
Soundcheck over. Anticipation as we all knew what came (we hoped) next. A meet and greet with the members?? Yep. YEP! Michael only this time, but he was so quiet. I watched the other Super Fans (I assumed they were anyhow since they had been granted legitimate soundcheck access, unlike GC and me ‘Soundcheck Crashers’ ha). I was nervous. I wanted to make sure I acted like all of them. Which was WAY too cool and collected, I might add. Michael Stipe, people! Let’s get crazy up in here! Closer he shuffled towards GC and me. Then GC and Michael. Just those two. I took their photo. Michael looked at me and my box. I simply said, “I made some things for you.” (I was proud that I actually formed words while looking at him.) His eyes lit up, “You mean clothes and stuff?” (YES I MEAN CLOTHES AND STUFF. GAHHH.) I will always remember how, in that little moment, over 12 years ago, I made Michael Stipe’s eyes light up. That was madness. Madness I tell you. Michael turned to the next person, and I handed Bertis my box (is there a more lovely man on the planet? There is not. Bertis, you are a gem. Thank you for your kindness that day cause I WAS A NERVOUS WRECK :) ) We - GC and me - tried to just hang out there as long as possible, but eventually, we were all gently directed toward the exits. I reluctantly began my walk out of the arena, and then I glanced to my left. Patti Smith was sitting in the arena, and she was staring and smiling at me. So, of course, I smiled back (BIG). At Patti Smith. And then I waved at her. I think she waved back. So, me and Patti, we also had a moment that day. ha.
Then the concert, of course. And incredible, of course, but nothing compared to the magic that GC and me, ‘Soundcheck Crashers 1999’, experienced earlier that day. For several years we kept in touch, GC and me - each from our corner of this planet. Connected by our love for REM. I suspect REM (David Bell) may know who I’m talking about, this GC, and if they’re reading this, isn’t she a lovely one too? We had a great day, that day in 1999. Obviously, I remember it vividly and very, very fondly.
So now REM are done. I’m sad. But mostly thankful that we had them at all, I guess. Will we be okay without them? I suppose so, but it won’t be as much fun. Boo. Thank you, Mike, Michael, Peter, Bertis, and David. You’ve been incredible. God speed.
You were made out of
cinereal, coriander, and lemon;
sable, cinnamon, and indigo;
bergamot, ginger, and rose. You
spoke like a thesaurus and sounded like
troubadours, da Vinci, broken glass, microchips, and
guitar string nerves, ragged at the edge
and carrying too much current. You
mumbled and sang clarion from rooftops by turns.
All of this has been living in my ears
and in my brain, that attic that
holds everything and lets go of nothing.
I was sixteen when I first found you,
a worn canvas of oils and mandolins
amongst the digital. I was a
computer mind and glass shatter heart,
losing my religion,
stabbing my skin to let demons out,
cracking open my ribcage looking for Judas
whom I’d been told had taken up residence
somewhere between my spleen and heart. I’d been told
that Hell was in the secular music building highways
through my ears and behind my eyes, and that no good girl
would allow the seduction to even begin.
But when they weren’t looking,
I ate the mandolin strings I stole from you and
dreamed in watercolor.
I grew up, fled that town, and found another;
I sat behind a sound board and a microphone
painting the airwaves with my own pigments.
I kept finding you, distilling your rose petals,
and drinking their wine. But the words had fled.
When they came back to me, I started
siphoning the indigo and violet out of my bruises
to write letters in rhyming code that sounded
like your own missives. And I am still
writing them, all full of words like photographs
and wired for sound. I turn them around backwards,
set them in my windshield, and show the world
how streetlights can cast long shadows through memories
and make ghosts return from the dead.
I am thirty-five now, and your soma still rides through my veins
along with lizard poets wearing leather, Irish men leaking
God into their rock-n-roll, and choirgirls playing
pianos. I, a red-haired autistic temptress,
have torn your fables from off my attic walls
and bestowed them to my loved ones as gifts;
given everyone around me your rose wine to drink;
and slid your Even fruit past open lips
with my stained fingers. Though I know that you
will press no more rose wine, I still have vintage in my
cellars – the bottles hang from your stolen mandolin strings
as stained glass promises that catch the light.
When my bowers grow frigid and leaf-strewn,
I will pour that wine in libations over the soil and wait for the roses
to return. And when they do, they will be there
to catch me if I fall.
Thanks for the memories. I wanted to submit a befitting few words of thanks. This is my second visit here and I am amazed at the outpouring of love.
It felt like a family member had died when I heard the news. I’ve taken a couple weeks so I won’t be too emotional.
I think early on it was the harmony of the vocals that sucked me in. Then it was the hooks. Then the hope-filled messages. There were so many reasons to love you guys.
It is sad that we only get a few more new songs. I should be happy that the world got 31 years of REM. I will never stop listening to your songs. I love you guys!
I still can’t accept that I will never see you live again. I will never again see Michael’s trademark dancing, or hear Peter’s jangly guitar sounds amplified around the room. I will never again see Mike standing on the left looking so damn cool making bass look like the easiest thing in the world. I will never again experience the chilling harmonies between Michael and Mike which are some of the best moments of REM songs. I will never again feel that dizzy excitement before an REM show, or feel the blissful daze for the few days after.
For this, I am deeply sad. But I am also incredibly happy that REM made these things.
i only had the privilege of seeing R.E.M. once — palace of auburn hills, detroit, 2003, in the front row. when R.E.M. came back into town the next year during the vote for change tour, pearl jam was playing across the state and i chose to see them instead — a decision i now regret, even though i’ve always considered pj to be my favorite band.
R.E.M. are far from over. they are the band we will pass along to our children, the way my parents passed their love of the beatles and dylan to me. one day my children will ask me what it was like to see R.E.M. live — and i hope that by that time the guys will have decided to regroup for a few more shows — but either way, i will have the pleasure of sharing the music and memories with the next generation. R.E.M. was, and still is, and always will be a band that MATTERS.
Mike, Michael, Peter, and Bill.. i wish you “ALL THE BEST” in all of your endeavors to come. you have given me, and millions of others, the greatest joy we can have from music. from the very bottom of my heart, thank you.
Love, Katie (USA)
Request from Hungary
When I heard the news I felt that from now on something will be missing from my life, I was left alone orphaned and deluded. They had promised to meet us very soon. I was looking forward to it patiently, every day dreaming about the following album and tour. The album turned out to be stunningly great but the tour never happened. I can even cope with the thing that there won’t be any more albums, since it would be unlike REM to agonize, but there could be a farewell tour.
After the 2008 concerts (4 venues) I was in such euphoria that I started making a banner for the next tour. I was working on it for a whole week. I wanted to wave it but I’ve got no more chance for that.
REM makes up such a huge part of my daily life that it’s very hard to accept the fact that they won’t be there anymore. So I’m hoping for a tour where I can say goodbye.
I’m immeasurably thankful for all the experiences REM has given me so far. I can never get bored with this music no matter how much I listen to it, I always find something wonderful in it.
Thank you so much.
Kinga from Hungary
It was just a matter of time before my favorite band of the last 20-odd years (and likely the rest of ‘em) ran “Out of Time” and switched off their microphones and instruments (at least as a collective unit), but luckily the split was amicable. Rare in the music business, but that befitted R.E.M.’s style.
To say, like many others, that this band infuenced and uplifted me would be an understatement, for I can’t count the # of ways and times, but I’ll quickly highlight them:
Saw & heard “The One I Love” MTV video in 1987 & was smitten. “End of the World” had this ex-skater hooked. I got “Document” on cassette. Bought “Green” (my first CD), then every album before and after it (“New Adv’s” is still my fave), loving their back catalogue just as much (“Fables” rules!). Agreed they lost some footing from “Up” to “Sun”, but to paraphrase Michael, the 3-legged dog relearned walking with “Accelerate”, and followed the 1-2 punch—and well-deserved Rock & Roll Hall of Fame induction—through with “Collapse into Now”.
I listened to the latter—now final—LP last Sunday, and was moved to tears as I sung along to “It Happened Today”. It was like the catharsis of a loved one’s death finally hitting you. So, not to sound dramatic, I’m ready to move on, as they were weeks ago. “I Feel Fine”, as their famous song goes…:) “1,000,000” thanks, R.E.M.!
In parting (3 great quotes):
“Leave the road and memorize this life” -Find the River
“Leave it all behind” -Leave
“I’m outta here” -Electrolite
La vostra musica mi unisce e mi unirà sempre a Francesco!
Nica da Catania