Anniversary of R.E.M.'s First Gig

04/05/2011
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(Gibson) On this day in 1980, R.E.M. played their first ever gig when appearing at St. Mary's Episcopal Church, Athens, Georgia. Gibson takes a look back: Rock and roll bands that changed the course of popular music history always have a story to tell. Over the years, R.E.M. would tell plenty of tales and create a few of their own, but their early days in Athens, Georgia, remain the stuff of the American rock and roll dream.

On this very day in 1980, R.E.M. played their first-ever concert at St. Mary's Episcopal Church in Athens. That night they were still called Twisted Kites, the wonderfully incisive moniker R.E.M had not popped into their collective consciousness just yet.

Michael Stipe (vocals), Peter Buck (guitar), Mike Mills (bass) and Bill Berry (drums) lined up on stage to play music for the birthday party of Kathleen O'Brien, who at the time was the drummer's girlfriend. They gave the assembled students and partygoers over two hours of post-punk, cutting edge rock and roll. more on this story

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