REM's Michael Stipe still a 'Superman' at 50

4

January

Michael stipe It's the end of the world as we know it: REM frontman Michael Stipe turns 50 years old today. It's been a while since REM was relevant to '80s fans. Personally, I think things started downhill with 1987's Document album. (Does anyone need to hear The One I Love ever again?)

But give Stipe and the band credit. They keep recording and still bring their A-game once in a while. Last year's Accelerate album had simply sublime moments, particularly the tune Supernatural Superserious.

And Stipe will always be a legend in the '80s world. Who didn't grow up trying to emulate his mumbly singing style from the Murmur and Reckoning days? Just TRY to make out what he's saying in Radio Free Europe. ("Keep me out of country in the word / Deal the porch is leading us absurd / Push that, push that, push that to the hull / That this isn't nothing at all / Straight off the boat, where to go?)

Here are five songs we can all hopefully agree and sing along to. Happy birthday, Michael.

TOP 5 R.E.M. SONGS ... ALL TIME:

5. SO. CENTRAL RAIN (1984): "The trees will bend, the conversation's dimmed. Go build yourself another home, this choice isn't mine." [Live on Letterman]

4. (DON'T GO BACK TO) ROCKVILLE (1984): "At night I drink myself to sleep and pretend I don't care if you're not here with me." [Listen]

3. SUPERMAN (1986): "You don't really love that guy you make it with now, do you. I know you don't love that guy cause I can see right through you." [Video]

2. CUYAHOGA (1986): "This is where they walked, swam, hunted, danced and sang. Take a picture here, take a souvenir." [Listen]

1. NIGHTSWIMMING (1992): "Every streetlight reveals the picture in reverse. Still, it's so much clearer. I forgot my shirt at the water's edge. The moon is low tonight." [Video]

[AP photo]

[Last modified: Wednesday, June 9, 2010 2:54pm]

    

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