R.E.M. - Did You Know?

R.E.M. - Did You Know?February 19, 2018

Music facts, music trivia, interesting stories and much more. Introducing the "Did You Know" page about American rock band from Athens, Georgia, R.E.M.




R.E.M. was an American rock band from Athens, Georgia, that was formed in 1980 by Bill Berry (drums), Peter Buck (guitar), Mike Mills (bass, backing vocals) and Michael Stipe (lead vocals).

One of the band's most successful and known songs in "Losing My Religion" and here we'll share an interesting fact with you about this song.

Losing My Religion is actually a southern expression that means "At my wit's end," as if things were going so bad you could lose your faith in God.

That means, that if you were losing your religion over a person, it could also mean losing faith in that person.

R.E.M. calaims that the song is not about religion and loss of faith, although the video clip is full of religious imagery. Some Catholic groups also decided to protest the video clip.

Band member Michael Stipe said that "Losing My Religion" was a fluke hit. The song was 5-minute long with no chorus and a mandolin as the lead instrument. Nevertheless, the song was a big hit and in 1991 won the Grammy Award for best pop performance by a duo or group with vocal.

In 2007, the R.E.M. was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, in the first year of their eligibility.



Just like most struggling bands, R.E.M. used to tour a lot in their early days. They got from one show to the next in an old van that was driven by their manager, who gave the band members $2 a day for food.

Also, before lead singer Michael Stipe randomly found "R.E.M." in the dictionary, the band considered some other names for their new band. Some of the suggestions included names like Negro Wives and Cans of Piss.

It's a good thing they eventually chose the name R.E.M.



The song "Drive" by R.E.M. was the first song that singer Michael Stipe wrote on the computer. Before that, Stipe had a typewriter, and the reason he decided to use the computer was because his handwriting was changing dramatically day to day.

Stipe said that he didn't trust his handwriting anymore, as he could write an amazing song, but the handwriting would look like shit and it won't be understood.

As for the song itself, "Drive" has no chorus, and this is not something that you see often in songs. Peter Buck, guitarist of R.E.M. used a nickel as a guitar pick for the mid-song guitar solo in order to get a sharper sound. He overdubbed the track six times.



The song "Orange Crush" by R.E.M. is a composite and fictional narrative in the first person, drawn from different stories that lead singer Michael Stipe heard growing up around army bases.

The song "Orange Crush" is about the Vietnam war and the impact on soldiers who are returning to a country that wrongly blamed those soldiers for the war.


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