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Old 08-30-2012, 05:58 PM   #796
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Stipe being gay didn't bother me in the slightest way. But to the typical 'merican Joe six pack, it just wasn't "COOL" or "TOUGH" or "AMERICAN" to like REM.
Good lord! Stereotype alert! Why don't we all get some Budweisers, hop in our Dodge Rams and go deer hunting. Woo Hoo! I'm 'merican Joe Six Pack! We don't need no stinkin' REM! Give us some Van Halen, bro! We're real men!
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Old 08-30-2012, 06:07 PM   #797
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Some Joes prefer 12-packs.
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Old 08-30-2012, 06:16 PM   #798
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Some Joes prefer 12-packs.
We're cool, tough 'mericans. What the fuck do we know? I better put on my wife beater and go hold up a 711.
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Old 08-30-2012, 06:18 PM   #799
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In acrobat's defense, in the uber-conservative Utah, I recall hearing people voice "concerns" that Stipe was gay in the mid-'90's. Don't recall anyone telling me they'd stopped listening to REM because of it, but for whatever silly reason, it bothered them enough to mention it.
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Old 08-30-2012, 06:21 PM   #800
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Utah? Really? I'm just having some fun with acrobat. It's not the first time I've heard this ridiculous stereotype and I'm sure it won't be the last.
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Old 08-30-2012, 06:24 PM   #801
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Stipe being gay didn't bother me in the slightest way. But to the typical 'merican Joe six pack, it just wasn't "COOL" or "TOUGH" or "AMERICAN" to like REM.
They had pretty much already lost this crowd before Stipe's official coming out.
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Old 08-30-2012, 07:38 PM   #802
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I hope I didn't offend anybody with my 'merican stereotype comments. In rural Ohio, where I live, it's just something I unfortunately see a lot of. If it's not country or classic rock, it's "gay", according to some.

Like I said, I saw them in both 03 and 04. I must say that while the Around the Sun songs were certainly low points of the 04 concert, I still thought it was the better of the 2. Could've been the intimacy of a theater vs. a large outdoor amphitheater, or that I was familiar with more of their songs. Missed them in 08 b/c the nearest they came to me was Chicago. I always figured I'd get another chance to see them. Oh well, I have 2 great shows to look back on, as well as 30 years of great music!

27 September 2003 - Blossom Music Center, Cuyahoga Falls, OH
set: Begin The Begin / What's The Frequency, Kenneth? / Pop Song 89 / Drive / Animal / Cuyahoga / Fall On Me / Bad Day / The One I Love / Strange Currencies / Beat A Drum / Orange Crush / Losing My Religion / Find The River / She Just Wants To Be / Walk Unafraid / Man On The Moon
encore: Everybody Hurts / Nightswimming / Final Straw / Imitation Of Life / It's The End Of The World As We Know It (And I Feel Fine)


27 October 2004 - Taft Theatre, Cincinnati, OH
set: Around The Sun / Finest Worksong / Begin The Begin / Exhuming McCarthy / Animal / Boy In The Well / Cuyahoga / High Speed Train / Drive / Electron Blue / The One I Love / Bad Day / I Wanted To Be Wrong / Imitation Of Life / Final Straw / Losing My Religion / Walk Unafraid / Life And How To Live It
encore: What's The Frequency, Kenneth? / Leaving New York / Sweetness Follows / Permanent Vacation / I'm Gonna DJ / Man On The Moon
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Old 08-30-2012, 07:49 PM   #803
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I hope I didn't offend anybody with my 'merican stereotype comments. In rural Ohio, where I live, it's just something I unfortunately see a lot of. If it's not country or classic rock, it's "gay", according to some.
Yeah, I don't see why everyone is jumping on you for this comment. I've encountered that type of attitude as well. I can think of several posters on these boards who would probably disown U2 if Bono were to come out as gay.
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Old 08-30-2012, 09:07 PM   #804
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No, they'd think it was just fine, unless he wanted to marry his male partner in the US.
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Old 08-30-2012, 09:30 PM   #805
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Yeah, I don't see why everyone is jumping on you for this comment. I've encountered that type of attitude as well. I can think of several posters on these boards who would probably disown U2 if Bono were to come out as gay.
It has nothing to do with pointing out that attitude, and more to do with ignoring the fact that R.E.M.'s artsy vibe and Stipe's appearance/persona would have turned off homophobes long before any supposed coming out. This had NOTHING to do with a decline in popularity.
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Old 08-30-2012, 09:42 PM   #806
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It has nothing to do with pointing out that attitude, and more to do with ignoring the fact that R.E.M.'s artsy vibe and Stipe's appearance/persona would have turned off homophobes long before any supposed coming out. This had NOTHING to do with a decline in popularity.
You're right. I was just basing my statement on the fact that REM's popularity, to me anyway, seemed to fade in the late 90s, around the time Stipe came out. I was in high school at the time, so it seemed to me to be the cause.

When did REM begin to lose their footing? Was it Monster? I know that Monster sold a bunch of copies, but was it actually very well received, or was it's success a carryover from the previous albums?
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Old 08-30-2012, 10:01 PM   #807
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One could point to Hi-Fi as the beginning of the slide, because E-Bow The Letter, great as it is, was a terrible choice for a lead single. Not touring for the album didn't help either. Up's attempt to lure back the Out of Time/Automatic crowd with Daysleeper, but it was pretty much over at that point.
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Old 08-30-2012, 10:30 PM   #808
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One could point to Hi-Fi as the beginning of the slide, because E-Bow The Letter, great as it is, was a terrible choice for a lead single. Not touring for the album didn't help either. Up's attempt to lure back the Out of Time/Automatic crowd with Daysleeper, but it was pretty much over at that point.
Yeah, I don't know if the stats/record sales back it up, but, if memory serves, this is when a lot of casual REM fan friends of mine started to check out, and I could not convince them of the greatness of Hi-Fi.
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Old 08-30-2012, 10:35 PM   #809
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Hi-Fi was a gift to more hardcore R.E.M. fans, drawing elements from nearly their entire history. To casual fans, probably just sounded like a mess.
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Old 08-30-2012, 11:37 PM   #810
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Hi-Fi was a gift to more hardcore R.E.M. fans, drawing elements from nearly their entire history. To casual fans, probably just sounded like a mess.
Hi-Fi is easily my favorite of theirs post-IRS, but it only became so after my taste had matured, for lack of a better term. Looking at it now, though, I wonder how much different Hi-Fi is from something like Automatic. I'd say Electrolite and Bittersweet Me are as catchy as anything on Automatic, and Hi-Fi has the advantage of lacking real clunkers the likes of which are found on Automatic.

I think any hyper-popular album is as much about timing as it is about songcraft, so perhaps Automatic just tapped into the zeitgeist in a serendipitous sort of way. Because it seems tough to me to make the argument that, with over a decade of retrospection, Automatic is a superior album to Hi-Fi.
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