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Monday, 7 November 2016

Let The Day Begin...Let The Day Start!: Day 312 - R.E.M. World Leader Pretend!

 Green - R.E.M.
Warner Bros.
Produced by Scott Litt and R.E.M.
Released 7th November 1988 (UK)
Released 8th November 1988 (US)
US Chart #12
UK Chart #27




Air
A1 Pop Song 89    
A2 Get Up    
A3 You Are Everything    
A4 Stand    
A5 World Leader Pretend    
A6 The Wrong Child    

   
Metal
B7 Orange Crush    
B8 Turn You Inside Out    
B9 Hairshirt    
B10 I Remember California    
B11 Untitled

Personnel
    Bill Berry – drums, percussion, backing vocals, bass guitar on "You Are the Everything", "The Wrong Child", and "Hairshirt"
    Peter Buck – guitar, mandolin, drums on "Eleventh, Untitled Song"
    Mike Mills – bass guitar, keyboards, accordion, backing vocals
    Michael Stipe – vocals


Additional musicians
    Bucky Baxter – pedal steel guitar on "World Leader Pretend"
   Keith LeBlanc – percussion on "Turn You Inside-Out"
    Jane Scarpantoni – cello on "World Leader Pretend"

 Singles on Green
(UK 12" Cover)
Orange Crush / Ghost Rider / Dark Globe
Released: December 1988
UK Chart #28

On the 7" the B-Side was Memphis Train Blues
 
Stand / Memphis Train Blues*
Released: January 1989
US Chart #6
UK Chart #48

* A little puzzled why they chose this as the B-Side as it had already been the B-Side of the 7" of Orange Crush in the UK and other markets!
 
(Cassette Single Cover)

Pop Song 89 (LP Version) / Pop Song 89 (Acoustic)
Released: May 1989
US Chart #89

 
Get Up / Funtime
Released: September 1989
US Single Only

***************************
I don't really  do a lot of politics on this blog unless of course the particular music I am talking about is dealing with it and so in a way this is a little bit different today because the anniversay of the release of the Green album by R.E.M. just happens to fall upon the eve of what could be one of the most important US Presidential races for decades.

Green, the sixth studio album from R.E.M. was released in the UK on the eve of the US Presidential Election - when the candidates were George H.W. Bush for the Republicans (with Dan Quayle as VP) and Michael Dukakis for the Democrats (with Lloyd Bentson as his running mate for VP) - and on Election Day in the US. R.E.M. were voicing their support for Dukakis but it wasn't to be. Bush pulled off the victory with 53.37% of the vote against 45.65% for the Democratic candidate.

Forward 28 years in time and here we are on the eve of another Presidential Election. This time the players are Donald Trump for the Republicans and Hilary Clinton for the Democrats

It hasn't been the prettiest race either! I wouldn't wish to soil this blog with the awful things that Trump has said, done, and had revealed about him during this campaign but it's worth pointing out that when the Ku Klux Klan are throwing their weight behind a candidate and former Presidents of the United States of America have vowed to not offer their support (including Republican Presidents) then you just know something is just not right! Would you honestly place your trust in a man who shamelessly has divided the nation with his racist "policies" (well, I'm not sure that they are actual policies as he hasn't really given a lot of detail on exactly what he wants to do)? Also, how can you trust a man who is so divided by his own opinions? What he says at 8am on a Fox News Breakfast show he is often denying he said it come a rally at 12 noon (or what he said in one rally is contradicted in another rally). As the good book says "he is a double-minded man, unstable in all he does" (James 1:8).

And then there's Hilary Clinton, popular among some Democratic voters but not necessarily all of them. But she has the experience (whereas Trump doesn't) in the grubby world of politics having served as First Lady (1993-2001), United States Senator representing New York (2001-2009) and United States Secretary of State (2009-2013). Her campaign has not been without incident either and she has continually been subject to attacks from Trump and Co. regarding her Emails and the sharing of Confidential Information on unprotected servers. Despite being cleared of any major wrong doing a couple of times by the FBI  she is still regarded by the Republicans as a criminal! Unlike Trump with his double-mindedness Hilary Clinton has rarely moved her position from the start of the campaign to the end, and is way more stable in my opinion.

America is at a crossroads (the political commentators always seem to use this phrase so I see no reason not to make use of it myself despite not being a political commentator) and the Big Decision tomorrow is likely to have major ramifications about what happens next in that land.

The call is as found in the words of Stand to:
"Think about direction
Wonder why you haven't before"

What direction is America going to take? Have you thought about that? What does America look like under a President Trump (god forbid!) compared to that of a President Clinton?

The Green album, by the way, was the first by the band to feature printed lyrics, although only the lyrics to "World Leader Pretend" appeared. That seems like a political statement in itself doesn't it?


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