Daysleeper

Album: Up (1998)
Charted: 6 57
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Songfacts®:

  • The lyrics were inspired when lead singer Michael Stipe saw the word "Daysleeper" on the door in an apartment and wondered about the life of the person inside.
  • This was the first single released off the very experimental Up album. The song was chosen because it was the only thing that sounded anything like the R.E.M. of old. >>
    Suggestion credit:
    Ian - melbourne, Australia, for above 2
  • The lyrics are documenting the nocturnal trials of an international share trader on the verge of a breakdown.
  • The music to this song was already written during the New Adventures in Hi-Fi sessions, but it wasn't released then, because Michael Stipe didn't have any lyrics to it. >>
    Suggestion credit:
    Martin - Rostock, Germany
  • "Lyrically, what can I say? I relate," Peter Buck wrote in the liner notes for the hits compilation In Time. "After all the years we've been a band, the one thing I know we have in common is that we stay up all night and sleep in the day. Also, we're all incredibly stubborn, so I guess that's two things. Anyway, I think this song perfectly captures that woozy, sea sick feeling you get during the daylight hours when you haven't slept."
  • The music video was directed by the Snorri Brothers and shot at Broadway Studios in New York City, and follows Stipe as a night shift office worker. "I think it's about the sort of alien nature of a night shift," bassist Mike Mills told Q magazine. "The weird lighting, the fluorescent lights that you find and the isolation of working the graveyard shift - how it screws up your sleep patterns and that sort of thing, and I think that's the main image we're trying to get across."

Comments: 3

  • David from Maplewood, NjAlso one of my favorite later songs. In reality 3 AM in New York is 3 PM in Taipai and Hong Kong. So Asia would be well into the workday, not waking up. It would be 8 AM in London, but being a trader the Asian markets would be of critical importance. I'm a little surprised at Michael's inaccuracy.
  • Dave from Cardiff, WalesGreat return to form for REM after several years where they went off the rails
  • P.a. from Paris, FranceDefinitely my favorite post Automatic For The People REM song.
    The intro and the chorus are based on the same rythm, but the pre-chorus is totally different.
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