R.E.M. Share Previously Unreleased Song “Fascinating” to Benefit Bahamas Hurricane Relief | Under the Radar - Music Magazine

R.E.M. Share Previously Unreleased Song “Fascinating” to Benefit Bahamas Hurricane Relief

Song Recorded in Nassau, Bahamas in 2004

Sep 12, 2019
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R.E.M. have shared a previously unreleased song, "Fascinating," to benefit Bahamas hurricane relief efforts by Mercy Corps. The song was recorded in Nassau, Bahamas in 2004 for their Around the Sun album (released later that year), but it didn't make the cut. You can stream it below or you can download it from Bandcamp for a donation of $2.00 or more. Hurricane Dorian caused much destruction in Bahamas' northwest islands of Grand Bahama and Abaco earlier this month.

An original version of "Fascinating" was intended for R.E.M.'s 2001-released album Reveal, before being cut at the last minute, despite being frontman Michael Stipe's favorite song from the Reveal sessions (according to David Buckley's R.E.M. biography, Fiction), but the album was too long and something had to be cut. It was re-recorded by Stipe and his bandmates Peter Buck and Mike Mills in 2004 for Reveal (co-produced by Pat McCarthy and R.E.M, and engineered by Jamie Candiloro), but was cut again because the lush song didn't fit the vibe of the rest of the album, which was sparer.

Mills had this to say in a press release: "I have been fortunate to spend many weeks working and playing in the Bahamas, making friends and lots of music there. It breaks my heart to see the damage wrought by Hurricane Dorian. Please help us and Mercy Corps do what we can to alleviate the suffering caused by this catastrophe."

Neal Keny-Guyer, CEO of Mercy Corps, had this to say: "The Bahamas faces a long road to recovery after this devastating hurricane. We're grateful to have R.E.M. in our global community of humanitarians, sharing their song with the world to help the people of the Bahamas recover and build back even stronger."

Stipe previously released a six-song EP that raised nearly $100K for Mercy Corps' relief efforts for Hurricane Katrina.

You can also donate directly to Mercy Corps here.

R.E.M. recently announced a 25th anniversary deluxe box set reissue of their 1994 album Monster and shared a new remix of the album's single "What's the Frequency, Kenneth?" by original producer Scott Litt. The Monster reissue is due out November 1 via Craft Recordings and comes in a six-disc set that includes the original album, a disc of demos, the whole album remixed, two live concerts, and a Blu-ray featuring all the album's music videos and the Road Movie concert film. It's also available in other CD, LP, and digital configurations.

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