Monday, January 08, 2007

Miles Standish Proud

What better subject for the "first real post" than to congratulate local legends R.E.M. and their manager (and my friend and mentor) Bertis Downs on the band's induction this morning into the Rock And Roll Hall of Fame, and in their first year of eligibility no less. The boys from Athens join Patti Smith, Van Halen, The Ronettes and Grandmaster Flash and The Furious Five in the Hall's Class of '07. To be eligible for induction, this year's class had to release their first single no later than 1981. Although it's hard to believe as I type this, R.E.M. released their debut single, "Radio Free Europe" b/w "Sitting Still," on the local Hib-Tone label in July of 1981. I was 17, and still have my copy. (The photo above was taken about 4 months later, on November 17, at Merlyn's in Madison, Wisconsin.) Since I only recently posted a full-blown gush about how much they've meant to me for the past 26 years, I'll refrain from further hero-worship. But congrats, fellas.

In honor of the occasion, here's "Radio Free Europe" recorded live at Tyrone's in Athens on May 12, 1981.