Happy Easter Everyone.
Download Podcast #3
1) Stipe Introduction – 9/20/86, Fairpark Bandshell, Dallas, TX
As the venues got larger, the pushing up front would sometimes get pretty bad and it seemed the appropriate introduction for this show.
2) What’s the Frequency Kenneth – 7/4/99, Werchter Festival, Werchter, Belgium
One of my favorite memories was seeing the ‘What’s The Frequency, Kenneth?’ video for the first time and when Stipe had the big reveal when he had shaved his head.
3) Where’s Captain Kirk – 1992 Fan Club Single
This was the first fan club single that I had ever received via the fan club and still probably my favorite because of it’s relative obscurity as well as this was the freebie during 1992, right after Automatic for the People came out. If anything it might have given fans an idea of what direction the band was heading in the future.
4) Superman – Clique Original
I have always loved the original, maybe in certain ways moreso than what R.E.M. had done to it. The singing, I have to admit has a certain cornyness to it and definitely was improved with Mike Mills, pipes.
5) Me In Honey – Out of Time Demos
One of the underrated gems on Out Of Time.
6) Fascinating – Reveal Advance 2001
I never understood why this song was left off of Reveal as there were probably songs such as “I’ll Take the Rain” which could have been omitted instead. I am not sure if it would have saved Reveal for me. (In my later years, I have come to admit that Reveal was a natural progression for the band, however, it’s just not an album that I can connect with. I am not sure whether this song would ever fix that for me)
7) Orange Crush – 8/19/87, 40 Watt Club, Athens, GA
A very early and rough version of this song. Sometimes I think that demos can be overrated when it’s regarding songs that have been performed live already, and in the case of Orange Crush it was consistently played throughout the Work Tour,
8) Kohoutek – 9/26/84, Page Auditorium, Duke University, Durham, NC
I still believe that there is an underrated population that always had a certain apprecation for this song. Not the first song you think about when you think about Fables, but a classic nonetheless.
9) Black Boys on Mopeds – 7/4/99 Werchter Festival, Werchter, Belgium
10) I’m Not Over You – 7/4/99 Werchter Festival, Werchter, Belgium
11) Why Not Smile – 7/4/99 Werchter Festival, Werchter, Belgium
During the Up tour, we were blessed with the expert guitar playing of Michael Stipe who would head out during the guitar with his acoustic guitar playing. There was something authentic about his performances as he would walk out and often times struggle through the songs and definitely offered something different on the Up Tour than had been accomplished prior or even future tours. After Michael would struggle through, then Mike Mills would head on and they would come through with a stunning version of ‘Why Not Smile’.
12) Nightswimming – 11/18/95, Omni, Atlanta, GA
A fan favorite.
13) Time Is On My Side – 8/25/85 JB Scott’s Theatre, Albany, NY
As far as I know, and I could be wrong about this, it would be the only time that they performed this song that was popularized by the Rolling Stones. I have always felt that R.E.M. was more of a Stones band than a Beatles band, as the elements from the Rolling Stones are more pronounced. It might be the simple fact that the Rolling Stones featured a full time lead singer/frontman like Jagger vs. the combo of Lennon/McCartney who were often behind an instrument when they were singing.
14) Walk, Don’t Run – 12/5/85, The Mosque, Richmond, VA
“Michael Stipe on Acid!”. The end of the Reconstruction Tour seemed to have brought out some of the more raucous events, but I guess after you have been pretty much on tour for 9 months that things can get a little crazy onstage.
15) Man On the Moon – 1/13/01 Rock in Rio, Rio De Janiero, Brazil
I would be hard-pressed to omit Man on the Moon for it has become one of my son’s favorite songs. For a two year old who likes to use the word “No”, it is refreshing to hear him sing along “Yeah Yeah Yeah Yeah”.
16) Stumble/Skank – 4/24/82, Merlin’s, Madison, WI
Always one of my favorites, and a combination that would appear to not have been played all to often, this version maxes out at over 13 minutes, not very common for an R.E.M. song.