There is no denying that the band R.E.M. had a very good run. Together for over 30 years, the legendary college rockers put out 15 albums, made tens of millions touring the world, and had quite a few Top 10 singles. So after all that, they have decided to call it a career, announcing their breakup on their website yesterday.
“To our Fans and Friends: As R.E.M., and as lifelong friends and co-conspirators, we have decided to call it a day as a band,” they wrote in a group statement. “We walk away with a great sense of gratitude, of finality, and of astonishment at all we have accomplished. To anyone who ever felt touched by our music, our deepest thanks for listening.”
Many of R.E.M.’s die-hard fans were rather shocked by the announcement. The group put out a Top 5 album earlier in the year and were supposedly in the midst of recording new music. So why the sudden split?
Leave it to the gossip blogs to create all kinds of wild chisme. So far, rumors for the breakup have included issues with their record label, fatigue, and internal turmoil after singer Michael Stipe released naked pictures of himself online.
Stipe went on to issue his own statement, assuring fans that the group will remain friends.
“Our fans realize this wasn’t an easy decision,” he said. “But all things must end, and we wanted to do it right, to do it our way.”
By Michael Lopez