chapel hill

Hans 2021 Song Draft: Round Six-Pick 11-Fall On Me-R.E.M. (1986)

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Fall On Me REM Discogs Image One
Image Credit: Discogs

Hanspostcard has a song draft challenge. This is my Round Six pick.

Moving into 1986… My first introduction to R.E.M. wasn’t the radio or MTV. It was an odd video channel on Cablevision in the early 80s in my NC hometown (my mom only had basic cable…no MTV). I’ve talked at great length with Max (Powerpop Blogger) about this obscure video channel. I remember two VJs, one named “Dr. John” (not the musician) that wore blue scrubs and one named “Carrot Top” (not the comedian), that, of course, was a red-headed dude. I have no idea where this channel broadcast from but, it was a seriously stripped down operation. It was just rotating VJs, sitting at a desk, talking into a camera…and playing music videos. The first video I recall seeing was Radio Free Europe, the Murmur version, not the Hib-Tone single (I later found out). I was immediately hooked but, totally missed who the band was. (Interestingly, the Hib-Tone version was recorded at Drive-In Studios in Winston-Salem, NC and the Murmur version was recorded at Reflection Studios in Charlotte, NC.) Fast forward to the end of my senior year of high school and I see some of So. Central Rain (I’m Sorry) on MTV. I had no idea that this was the same band. It wasn’t until my sophomore year of college, when Driver 8 came out (another one I like), that a buddy of mine told me who R.E.M. was…a college band out of the University of Georgia (Bulldogs). Every piece of music of theirs that I was lucky enough to catch, I loved. Finally, in 1987, The One I Love broke thru to #9 on Billboard’s Hot 100 and they seemed to be everywhere. Their highest charting hit was Losing My Religion, getting to #4 in 1991. Out of their entire catalog, which is gi-hugic, Fall On Me wound up being my favorite, with my introductory piece, Radio Free Europe, coming in second. I wish I had seen them live.

Bit of odd trivia…five strange degrees of separation. R.E.M. had a manager by the name of Jefferson Holt. He was with them until 1996 when they got rid of him for sexual harassment. Jefferson Holt is from Chapel Hill and his mother is named Bertha “B” Holt. She was an NC State Rep. from 1975 to 1994, representing my home county (and another one). She was quite the pioneer, advocating for the ERA and married rape victims (which is ironic as hell considering her son’s behavior). My paternal grandmother was in Democratic politics in the 60s, 70s & 80s, running for local office, herself (and on first-names basis with several governors). She campaigned heavily for her favorites and “Bee” Holt was one of them. I met Bee Holt several times as a kid and remember all of her “Bee” 🐝 paraphernalia all over my grandmother’s house.

I guess this makes me closer to R.E.M. than Kevin Bacon! 😉 😊 ~Vic

RIAA Gold Album Image Two
Their first Gold album.
Image Credit: RIAA

Released 0n August 11, 1986, it was the third track from the album Lifes Rich Pageant. It debuted on the Billboard Hot 100 at #96 the weekend of October 4, peaking at #94 on October 11 before finally disappearing from the chart on October 25. It did better on the Album Rock Tracks, making it to #5 for one week on September 6.

“Of the genuinely new songs, Peter Buck’s basic music track for Fall On Me dated back to July of 1985, when Stipe had written a lyric about acid rain [but], the song had been virtually re-written, melody and lyrics, by the time it came to be recorded. Stipe, who declared in 1991 that “…this may be my favourite song in the R.E.M. catalogue…”, has described the final version as “…pretty much a song about oppression.” Trainspotters might like to know that the counter-melody used in the second verse is actually the song’s original tune.

Johnny Black (2004)
Reveal: The Story of R.E.M.
Page 123

Additional:
R.E.M. Fiction: An Alternative Biography (David Buckley/2012/Google Books)
R.E.M. HQ (Official Site)
The Complete R.E.M. (R.E.M. Timeline)

Lyrics

His Favorite Song

POTD: The Pig

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I suspect that the same guy that built Jack (here, here & here) probably built the pig. The BBQ inside is really good, too.

Heh. You can just see my reflection, taking the picture. ~Vic

Metal Pig Image
Chapel Hill
03-05-2020

Picture of the Day

Beware Stephen Barrett & His Quackwatch

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Update:
Some of the links, below, became broken and I’ve had to re-gather some information as Mr. Barrett has done his best to wipe out his history. If links become broken again, I have provided PDF screen captures of the data.

[Note: This is a re-post from an old blog, originally posted on February 27, 2010. I think it’s worth sharing because I find this man to be dangerous. He’s a liar and a bully and, I’m shining the light on him.]

This guy, Stephen Barrett…he’d have you believe that he is the foremost expert in all things quackery. To him, anything other than mainstream-AMA-backed medicine is useless.

Stephen Barrett Image
Photo Credit: Anaximperator Blog

Although he is free to present his opinion, much like the rest of us out here blogging (me, included), do not be fooled by the ‘M.D.’ at the end of his name. I think he even wrote his own biography on Wikipedia. However, that being expressed, he has gotten himself into quite a bit of trouble in the courts for repeatedly suing people and claiming he was a ‘retired psychiatrist’. Carlos F. Negrete of Negrete Law and Health Freedom Law, attorney for Tedd Koren, D.C., got the awful truth out of Mr. Barrett…

From Dr. Koren’s case:

At trial, under a heated cross-examination by Negrete, Barrett conceded that he was not a Medical Board Certified psychiatrist because he had failed the certification exam. This was a major revelation since Barrett had provided supposed “expert testimony” as a psychiatrist and had testified in numerous court cases. Barrett also had said that he was a “legal expert” even though he had no formal legal training.

That cross-examination (screen capture PDF) took place in 2005 in Allentown, PA…Mr. Barrett’s longtime residence (he was born in New York City in 1933). In 2007, a higher court in Pennsylvania backed up the lower court’s decision to dismiss his frivolous lawsuit (original screen capture PDF) (updated screen capture PDF). It was at that point he decided to relocate to Chapel Hill, NC. Perhaps Allentown folks got tired of his crap? I find it amusing that he decided to move to an area that is a hotbed of the very alternative medicine he rails against. The Triangle of North Carolina (Raleigh-Durham-Chapel Hill) contains a plethora of natural, homeopathic and holistic practitioners. I’m pretty sure he didn’t move to the area to get warm fuzzies from the locals. I think he saw an opportunity to make money harassing and ambulance-chasing gifted healers. He does have legal bills he needs cover.

A Patrick Pontillo operated a now-defunct website (screen capture PDF) on chemical sensitivities (a subject that I know something about). He maintains an additional, similar website, Blue Marble Album. He has an extensive history on Mr. Barrett.

Tim Bolen has his own history of Barrett (screen capture PDF & Web Archived Page) from his website and wrote an article on the Doctor’s Data vs Barrett case. Judging by this posted 2016 legal decision, the case was nearly a stalemate but, Barrett’s National Council Against Health Fraud (NCAHF) dissolved after the lawsuit began and Quackwatch dissolved before the case came to trial…even though the website is still active and full of hysterical mainstream medical nonsense. “Googling” this case (I really, really dislike that term but, it is, now, part of our language…for better or worse…) will return links stating that the case was “settled, amicably, out of court”. Translation: Both parties were tired of fighting after six years. A lawsuit of this size and scope costs money…and time. And, Stephen Barrett is in his 80s. The briefing notes clearly state that both parties were free to re-file and start new court proceedings. That means…more money and more time.

Additional information:
Steven C. Eisen’s Commentary: The Tedd Koren Case (Bolen Report)
King Bio Victory/NCAHF, Inc. Loss (Humantics Foundation)
California Appeals Court Bludgeons Quackbusters (Quackpot Watch/Web Archive)
How The Attack On Alternative Medicine Started (Quackpot Watch/Web Archive)
Stephen Barrett: AMA Shill (Whale)

Be very careful when you read this man’s so-called “facts”. He is no expert. He merely has an opinion and he has tried to beat people over the head with it. Believing that this man is a seasoned doctor with many, many practicing years of experience would be as ridiculous as believing that I am an experienced journalist. I am not and would never claim to be.