Fate Line Friday from October 3rd
REM’s “Sitting Still” was the Fate Line Friday contribution from our own good Dr. John: I spent a lot of time in the late 80s and early 90s learning REM songs, so it is not a surprise to see that influence creeping into my guitar parts. The janglyarpeggiated section in the verses of this great song is an obvious model for several of the guitar parts on the album. The idea of running triplets of eighth notes over a section of 4/4 time was obviously not invented by Peter Buck, but it was likely here that I learned this specific technique. The arpeggiation pattern I use in the first chord of the chorus for After a Fall is exactly the same one as in Sitting Still. A similar motif crops up in A Story’s End.I’m not sure anymore where I learned chord shapes which leave the high E and B strings open (it might have been from Bela Lugosi’s Dead by Bauhaus), but I love this use of a high drone and the extra textures and dissonances it produces. Anyway, I would have used them also playing along to this song (in the chorus “I-I-I can hear you”). So you will also hear these crop up in my playing, such as in the bridge for He Once (“How many times…”).