Beyond the Band

Episode 114: R.E.M. – Alliteration, Acronyms, Eyebrows

This week we talk about the quintessential alt rock band, R.E.M. If it weren’t for these guys, indie music wouldn’t exist and rock would be a much blander genre. A group that refused to bend to anyone else’s rules and spent years paying their dues as a cult success. But when they finally hit radio airways, they didn’t go anywhere and gave us classics that have gone down in music history. We tell their story to the best of our ability, but this famously private band have sometimes walked the line of truth and myth. And their songs are commonly misunderstood, so get ready to learn how you were wrong.

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Comments (7)

    • Oh that makes so much sense haha! I did read they had a bad show at a military base. Threw objects and called them some nasty things. Did not realize one of those items was an actual can of piss.

  1. There was actually some Heroin. Michael was quite the hard druggie in college but gave everything up after his girlfriend, Carol Levi, was killed in a car crash and he was too spaced out to grieve properly. “Camera” and “So.Central Rain.” Are about her.

    Oh and he used to be vegetarian but isn’t anymore.

    He also had Bulimia and fairly serious mental problems through the early 80s.

    It’s a rare case of a rock star getting healthier the more famous he got.

    • Wow, he does a gooood job keeping that stuff pretty quiet. It was so hard to find much on their personal lives (kudos for that). Even looking up the heroin story in interviews, he so off-handedly mentions it you could easily miss it.

      Thanks for the additional info! 🙂

      • I think maintaining their family/private space was part of what made them professionally successful, their sanity didn’t go out the window like so many others did.

        There are some pretty good recent interviews with Stipe where he talks about private stuff. But he can do it now that’s he’s no longer a superstar I guess. Thanks so much for the podcast. I love you guys, you’re getting me through this lockdown weirdness.

        • Thank you so much! We’re glad to be able to help others in anyway, even with our drunken rants and various bits of info haha!

          Also, much respect to REM. This episode really made us like them more!

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