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R.E.M.BERING

Dave Iannacone

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Bands break up all the time; it’s really nothing new. However, most bands aren’t R.E.M. Inarguably one of the most influential bands of the past three decades, remaining members Michael Stipe, Mike

Remaining members Michael Stipe, Mike Mills, and Peter Buck decided to call it quits after 31 years together.

Mills, and Peter Buck decided to call it quits after 31 years together. Over their career, the band has released 15 studio albums, including classics such as Document, Out Of Time, and Automatic for the People, six of which have been certified platinum. They have won a series of awards, including three Grammys, and even the VMA Video of the Year. In 2007, they were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, on their first year of eligibility.

What makes R.E.M. so much different from so many of their peers was their incredible rise to fame. Starting out as a little-known cult band from Athens, Georgia, they moved on to become college radio icons with crossover hits such as “The One I Love,” “It’s The End Of The World As We Know It (And I Feel Fine,)” and their first major-label hit, “Stand.” However, with the release of their biggest single, “Losing My Religion,” R.E.M. became full-fledged rock gods. Very few bands build up that big of a loyal following before making it so big. Their success continued throughout the 90’s with hits such as “Everybody Hurts,” “Man On The Moon,” and “What’s The Frequency, Kenneth?” In 1997, drummer Bill Berry announced that he was leaving the band, but the three remaining members carried on as a trio and carried their success into the 2000’s.

Their split comes as a surprise, with a brief message posted on their official website saying, “to anyone who ever felt touched by our music, our deepest thanks for listening.” Each member also released a brief statement expressing their gratitude and explaining their decision. They are currently compiling their first career-spanning collection to be released this November.

Very few bands really get to walk away on their own terms in such a peaceful way. The music R.E.M. is leaving behind will be remembered for generations to come. Their uniqueness, dedication and, commitment to their art and music really makes them one of the greatest ever. They will be missed.

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R.E.M.BERING