R.E.M.’s Michael Stipe Reflects On Audience Reaction To ‘Losing My Religion’

R.E.M‘s Michael Stipe recalls that the audience’s response to the band’s cult hit “Losing My Religion” was the “most powerful feeling” of his life.

“You felt it before you saw it,” singer Stipe told Apple Music Hits in a recent interview. “The energy coming off of an audience, a large audience in an outdoor arena, with the first notes, those first da, da, da, da and the place would just explode with energy.”

“We got all that being onstage, being elevated, being the center of attention. It all came right towards us. It was the biggest shot in the arm, the biggest jolt of adrenaline – the most powerful feeling that I think I’ve ever felt,” he added.

“Losing My Religion” was the first single from R.E.M’s 1991 album Out of Time. The song became R.E.M.’s highest-charting hit in the U.S., reaching No. 4 on the Billboard Hot 100.

Fellow bandmate Mike Mills added, “Honestly, I’m getting chill bumps just thinking about it now because there was so much joy. I mean, by starting that song and playing that song, you’ve made so many people so very happy that it was just a pleasure to do it. To be able to raise everyone’s energy level and enjoyment level that much, it’s still thrilling to think about.”

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