Any REM fan will know what I’m talking about! Although gutted to learn on 21 Sept 2011 that my favourite band are splitting up I am not surprised. REM have been a huge influence in my life, especially my art since I remember and although I am sad there will be no more gigs and new music after November there are still 15 fab albums to listen to. There are many songs with many meanings but 6 of my fave have to be:
At My Most Beautiful – ‘at my most beautiful I count your eyelashes secretly, with everyone whisper I love you. I let you sleep.’ I’m not going to say much more on this one apart from that it is my all time fave song!
Walk Unafraid – ‘I will walk unafraid… I was brought into this life a little lamb… courageous stumbling, fearless was my middle name…’ Courage can always be mustered from somewhere when we need it.
Daysleeper – ‘my night is coloured headache grey’ – that would be a fab name for a paint colour. This song reminds me of a time when I wasn’t sleeping very well and used to listen to this to drift off thinking about what the other parts of the world were doing ‘Hong Kong is present. Tai Pei awakes up.’ When I listen to this I think of the chaos that life often is.
It happened today – ‘this is not a parable, this is a terrible, this is a terrible thing.’ Just about sums up how I felt at the news of the band that I grew up listening to being no more, but on a more positive note I love this tribute from Pearl Jam, let the covers continue and REM songs live on. This one is for you Michael, Peter, Mike and Bill.
The Great Beyond -‘I’m pushing an elephant up the stairs.’ This is definitely my cheer up song, thanks to my dear friend Claire. Everytime I hear this song I think of her and smile. When we were at school I remember going through a particularly difficult time and walking to life drawing when Claire started singing this to me and I couldn’t do anything but giggle so Claire this one is for you!
Everybody Hurts – ‘Everybody hurts, everybody cries.’ This is a classic and a reminder that we all have bad days, and need to cry. The strongest memory I have of this song is being driven to school by my mum when I was younger and me obviously giving her a particularly hard time that day as children often do and Everybody Hurts came on the radio. My mum just went silent and said – listen to this, I have feelings too!
Each image above was drawn/made and influenced by these incredible songs, and now off I go to listen to the best band that ever lived, with my sketchbook. Thank you REM for so many good years and influencing so many people along the way!