.

R.E.M. Could Release Rare Fan-Club Singles

'We'll put them in a big box set for charity one day,' Peter Buck says

Michael Stipe of R.E.M. performs in Amsterdam.
Paul Bergen/Redferns
August 12, 2013 2:10 PM ET

R.E.M. fans have prized the band's rare fan club singles for more than two decades, and now the group is considering releasing the highly desired tracks as a box set to raise money for charity. The alt-rockers released a two-track fan exclusive each year from 1988 until their dissolution in 2011. Though the releases were sent to fan club members who joined for a mere $10 a year, genuine copies fetch a high price today, as the band pressed only 6,000 copies of each single. Individual fan club singles can fetch triple digit prices, and a collection of nearly all the Christmas-related fan club releases is currently listed for more than $1,100 on music memorabilia website Eil.com.

100 Greatest Artists: R.E.M.

"I just liked the idea . . . I was never in the Beatles fan club but . . . I really liked the fact you would get a weird thing in the mail every year," guitarist Peter Buck told the BBC. "So every year, R.E.M. put out a record. It was all material that had never been released anywhere else." R.E.M. packed the singles with new original songs, duets with artists like Neil Young and Radiohead and covers including Television's "See No Evil." "There were like 24 of them, which makes about 50 songs," Buck said. "We'll put them in a big box set for charity one day."

Despite the news, an R.E.M. reunion looks unlikely in the near future. "Right now, there are zero plans for an R.E.M. reunion. Absolutely zero," bassist Mike Mills told Rolling Stone in May. "But the future is a strange place. We could all be hit by a meteor tomorrow, but I would consider it highly unlikely."

Buck is currently playing with Tired Pony, which also includes Gary Lightbody from Snow Patrol and Richard Colburn from Belle and Sebastian, among others. Their latest album, The Ghost of the Mountain, arrives on August 19th.

To read the new issue of Rolling Stone online, plus the entire RS archive: Click Here

prev
Music Main Next

blog comments powered by Disqus
Around the Web
Powered By ZergNet
Daily Newsletter

Get the latest RS news in your inbox.

Sign up to receive the Rolling Stone newsletter and special offers from RS and its
marketing partners.

X

We may use your e-mail address to send you the newsletter and offers that may interest you, on behalf of Rolling Stone and its partners. For more information please read our Privacy Policy.

Song Stories

“Vans”

The Pack | 2006

Berkeley, California rappers the Pack made their footwear choice clear in 2006 with the song "Vans." The track caught the attention of Too $hort, who signed them to his imprint. MTV refused to play the video for the song, though, claiming it was essentially a commercial for the product. Rapper Lil' B disagreed. "I didn’t know nobody [at] Vans," he said. "I was just a rapper who wore Vans." Even without MTV's support, Lil' B recognized the impact of the track. "God blessed me with such a revolutionary song… People around my age know who really started a lot of the dressing people are into now."

More Song Stories entries »
 
www.expandtheroom.com