R.E.M. just released a deluxe 25th anniversary edition of Out Of Time, the 1991 album that catapulted them into pop stardom. To promote the reissue, frontman Michael Stipe and bassist Mike Mills recently stopped by the Iroquois New York Hotel, where they slept five to a room in the early ’80s, to reminisce about the band’s early days with Sunday TODAY.
Stipe remembers stepping out after playing small gigs at “about 3 or 4 in the morning, to find the deli in Times Square that had the largest knish. And that would be my food for the day. If I got a knish for a dollar, then I was doing really well.” He also discusses “Losing My Religion” (“I wanted to write a song about unrequited love and about desire”), his writing process, his favorite song on the album (“Country Feedback,”) and “Shiny Happy People,” which he describes as his attempt at bubblegum pop music for kids: “It was a song written for children. It’s still enjoyed in elementary schools around the world, as far as I know.” Watch below.