During Michael Shannon and Jason Narducy’s R.E.M. tribute tour stop in Athens, Georgia last night, the original R.E.M. members Mike Mills, Peter Buck, Bill Berry, and Michael Stipe joined them on stage.
The reunion marks the first time R.E.M.’s core four members have been on stage together since their Rock ‘n’ Roll Hall of Fame induction in 2007. Currently, Shannon and Narducy are on tour performing R.E.M.’s 1983 album Murmur in full, which spawned from Mike Mills’ guest appearance with the duo in Chicago last year. At Shannon and Narducy’s performance at the 40 Watt Club in Athens, Georgia last night, each R.E.M. member came on stage to perform various songs with the duo.
They didn’t all perform together, and Michael Stipe didn’t perform at all — but he did emerge at the end of the performance to tell the audience “Speaking on behalf of Bill and Mike and Peter, we are so fucking thrilled to be here tonight.” The four members previously attended an R.E.M. tribute at the 40 Watt Club in 2022, but only Peter Buck and Mike Mills appeared on stage for that show — making the appearance alongside Shannon and Narducy last night the first time all four R.E.M. members have shared the stage together in 17 years. Watch clips of the performance below.
While R.E.M were inducted into the Rock ‘n’ Roll Hall of Fame in 2007, they are currently among the inductees for the 2024 Songwriters Hall of Fame. Last year, the group celebrated the 25th anniversary of their 11th album Up with a deluxe reissue. Meanwhile, Michael Stipe told The New York Times in December that a solo album was on the way, but yet to be announced. While their brief reunion was certainly joyous, Stipe did confirm to Rolling Stone in 2021 that R.E.M. “will never reunite” — So for those hoping for a full-fledged R.E.M. reunion, you may have to keep dreaming.
Michael Shannon and Jason Narducy are continuing their Murmur tribute tour through February. Revisit their appearance on Kyle Meredith With… and get tickets to the tour’s remaining dates in North Carolina, Pennsylvania, Massachusetts, and New York here.
— Scene SC (@SceneSC) February 9, 2024