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File Under Confusion
While “Pretty Persuasion” might not be the best R.E.M. song, it’s probably the most R.E.M. song, a absolute microcosm of what made them so great, and — more importantly — what made so many young people decide not just to listen to these kind of songs, but to go out and make their own versions of the these kind of songs.
Find some friends, grab a couple of guitars, designate a bassist, play at the drummers house. Jingle jangle jingle. Jangle jingle jangle. It didn’t even matter if you were as great as R.E.M., because R.E.M. didn’t really seem as great as R.E.M., either. The point was that anybody could do it; the original point of punk rock before it got all codified into the eternal arguments about what was and wasn’t punk.