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Tony Fletcher’s biography of the enigmatic quartet from Athens, Georgia, benefits not only from Tony’s long association with the band but also by the co-operation of the band itself. However, R.E.M. – being R.E.M. – were disinclined to reveal this at the time the book was first published in 1989 and Tony was thus obliged to keep this under his hat. All such restrictions have since been lifted for newer editions, of which there have been several, and this latest incarnation of the book – now retitled Perfect Circle – brings the story to its natural conclusion with R.E.M.’s decision to disband in September, 2011. Discussing fame, fortune and sexuality with the same keen eye he casts on the group's astonishing musical catalogue, Perfect Circle is neither blind fan worship nor jaundiced critical cynicism, but a balanced and thorough telling of one of the most compelling rock stories of our time. Drawing on dozens of interviews with friends, associates and the band members themselves, this is not just the story of one group's rise through cult status, but the story of American rock.
R.E.M., the most influential, prolific and vital American group of the last quarter century, chose to disband in September 2011. In this latest edition of his best-selling biography, previously entitle Remarks/Remarks Remade, Tony Fletcher brings the R.E.M. story up to date for the final time, and explains what led this unique group to draw a curtain on their career. Perfect Circle is the definitive biography of one of the most important bands of our tmies. The first book in R.E.M. now provides the last word. Tony Fletcher's biography of the enigmatic quartet from Athens, Georgia, benefits not only from Tony's long association with the band but also by the co-operation of the band itself. -- Publisher descripton.
This one-of-a-kind reference investigates the music and the musicians that set the popular trends of the last half century in America. • Contains an alphabetical collection of entries that each profile a major group and band from the past 60 years • Provides a selected discography and bibliography for further listening and reading for each entry • Covers a wide variety of styles from classic rock to surf rock to hip hop • Features sidebar entries which tie together larger popular music concepts such as the rise and influence of MTV and the phenomenon of girl bands
Robert Dean Lurie’s biography is the first completely researched and written since R.E.M. disbanded in 2011. It offers by far the most detailed account of their formative years—the early lives of the band members, their first encounters with one another, their legendary debut show, touring out of the back of a van, initial recordings, their shrewdly paced rise to fame. The people and places of ‘the South’ are crucial to the R.E.M. story in ways much more complex and interesting than have been presented thus far, says Lurie, who explores the myriad ways in which the band’s adopted hometown of Athens, Georgia, and the South in general, have shaped its members and the character and style of their art. The South is more than the background to this story; it plays a major role: the creative ferment that erupted in Athens and gripped many of its young inhabitants in the late 70s and early 80s drew on regional traditions of outsider art and general cultural out-thereness, and gave rise to a free-spirited music scene that produced the B-52’s and Pylon, and laid the ground for R.E.M.’s subsequent breakout success. Lurie has tracked down and interviewed numerous figures in the band’s history who were under-represented in or even absent from earlier biographies, and they contribute previously undocumented stories as well as casting a fresh light on the familiar narrative.
REM are the most influential, prolific and vital American group of the last quarter century. From their humble post-punk beginnings in the college town of Athens, Georgia to their current standing as a global phenomenon, REM have consistently bucked audience expectations and defied music biz rules. This new edition of Tony Fletcher's acclaimed biography brings the band's story right up to date, covering the departure of drummer Bill Berry, Michael Stipe's increasing role as a spokesman for humane causes, Peter Buck's 'air-rage' trial and the group's music right up to their 2001 Reveal album.
R.E.M.'s debut album, released in 1983, was so far removed from the prevailing trends of American popular music that it still sounds miraculous and out of time today. J. Niimi tells the story of the album's genesis - with fascinating input from Don Dixon and Mitch Easter. He also investigates Michael Stipe's hypnotic, mysterious lyrics, and makes the case for Murmur as a work of Southern Gothic art. EXCEPRT: In the course of an interview that took place some twenty years ago, Michael Stipe made passing reference to an essay that had a deep impact on him. It's what came to his mind when, after having been harangued by fans and journalists alike about Murmur's lyrics, already grown weary from having to continually entertain their broad speculations, he finally threw up his hands. "Anyone who really wants to figure out the words to our songs should probably read this essay, then go back and listen," Stipe told the interviewer. "It talks about how people misinterpret something that's being said, and come up with a little phrase or word that actually defines the essence of what the original was better than the original did." What Stipe was trying to say is that if you want answers to R.E.M., you're not only looking in the wrong place, you're also asking the wrong questions.
A reference guide to the decade's top trends, performers, and sounds, reviews the most influential albums, provides biographical overviews of key artists, and considers how technology and the Internet have impacted the industry.

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