I forgot to crosspost this here. It was my reaction to the R.E.M. breakup announcement:
When I was 16, my evil parents ripped our family from a comfortable existence on Long Island, N.Y., to follow my father’s career to the Boston area. It was honestly the most challenging thing for me to deal with until that age, leaving a young lifetime’s worth of friends, and specifically, my band, which pretty much meant everything to me. I had discovered what I wanted to do with the rest of my life: make music.
And it was music that helped soothe me, as it would so many other times over the years, in my harsh transition from a great New York suburb to a pretty — but dead — rural suburb in Massachusetts. In just a few months, I found new like-minded souls who wanted to form a band. They dug newer bands like the Clash, Talking Heads, Squeeze, and Elvis Costello.
It was with a few of these new friends that I went to go see the ascendant English Beat at the Walter Brown hockey arena at B.U. in 1982. We were pumped to see the ska-pop band but were knocked out by the opening band, R.E.M. None of us had heard a note by this enigmatic band as I’m certain was the case with most of the audience. But they were mesmerizing…..