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Don’t Forget the Songs-365: Mach Dos Day 13
Sun. Jan 22, 2012

Fall on Me
R.E.M.
1986

I caught this crappy head cold and I’ve been contemplating the meaning of Fall on Me. I believe Craig Rosen said it best when he wrote, in R.E.M. Inside Out—“[…] Stipe isn’t California dreaming but contemplating gravity and oppression.”

“♫ Feathers hit the ground before the weight can leave the air […] ♫” is actually a reference about an experiment of dropping feathers off the Leaning Tower of Pisa.

And I always thought Fall on Me was about Acid Rain?

My favorite part is still when Mike Mills sings—“♫ Well I could keep it above/ but then it wouldn’t be sky anymore/ So if I send it to you you’ve got to promise to keep it whole […] ♫”

If you think about it “Fall on Me” is actually a duet between Stipe and Mills. Listen for drummer Bill Berry adding his harmonies during the chorus when all three sing— “ ♫ It’s gonna Fall […]♫ ”

Here’s some R.E.M. trivia for you: Which word is misspelled in the original video for “Fall on Me?

One of the best performances of Fall on Me is from 1991. You can feel Stipe singing enthusiastically and unbridled during the chorus. I prefer this unplugged version.

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