In September 1989, Mark Whittier and I went to see R.E.M. at the Hartford Civic Center. It was my first concert. They opened the show with this song. And a lot of people left right after. Which I thought was odd. It ended up being a great show. A GREAT show. We had a fantastic time.
There was a time I was really sick of this song. But I don't know why. It's a great pop/rock song, no matter how much airplay it got in 1989. And it got a LOT of airplay in 1989!
Actually.... this is pretty much how I remember it.
Those who know me know I really went to see the opening act, Throwing Muses. They were, and remain to this day, my favorite band. And they were really awesome live. I also saw them in 1995, in Northampton, MA. And like 1989, I knew the only way to get people into a Throwing Muses song was to entice them with R.E.M. However, I can safely say I have gotten a lot of people into this great, underrated band, Give them a chance. You won't be disappointed.
(Also, Kristin Hersh and Michael Stipe did do a little duet together later.... which was a bigger hit than anything Throwing Muses ever did)
And actually.... this is pretty much how I remember it.