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Bands

R.E.M. Reunite For the First Time in 15 Years — Watch Surprise Performance of “Losing My Religion”

Like a comet, often observed as a once-in-a-lifetime event, R.E.M. returned to the stage last night (June 13) at the Marriott Marquis Hotel in New York City. Celebrating their induction into the Songwriters Hall of Fame, Michael Stipe, Peter Buck, Mike Mills, and Bill Berry surprised attendees with an acoustic rendition of “Losing My Religion,” marking their first performance together in 15 years.

The reunion held profound significance, as R.E.M. officially disbanded in 2011 after a 31-year career that left an indelible mark on the music world. This was the first public performance of Stipe, Buck, and Mills since their dissolution and the first time all four original members shared a stage since their 2007 Rock and Roll Hall of Fame induction. Berry, who left the band in 1997, has only intermittently performed with his former bandmates since then.

Earlier in the day, the band gave their first interview together with all four members on CBS This Morning. They humorously dismissed the idea of reuniting, with Mills quipping that it would take a “comet” to bring them back together and Buck expressing doubt that a reunion could ever live up to expectations.

Despite these playful denials, the band delighted fans by taking the stage that very evening. Stipe, speaking on behalf of the band during their induction, reflected on the enduring bond they share: “Writing songs and having a catalog of work that we’re all proud of and that is out there for the rest of the world for all time is hands-down the most important aspect of what we did. Second to that is that we managed to do so all those decades and remain not just friends, but dear friends.”

This surprise performance follows an unexpected reunion earlier this year. In February, R.E.M. came together during a tribute event celebrating their seminal debut album “Murmur” in their hometown of Athens, Georgia, although they did not perform at that time.

Fans have even more to anticipate, as Mills revealed last December that “plenty of vault songs” are yet to be released from R.E.M.’s extensive catalogue. However, the prospect of a full-scale reunion remains unclear. In 2022, Buck reiterated the permanence of their split, aligning with Stipe’s earlier assertion that a reunion would “never” happen. Yet, as last night demonstrated, anything is possible.

Watch the fan-shot footage of R.E.M. performing “Losing My Religion” below:

post-punk.com

From the Editor at Post-Punk.com

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