Nottingham Press will release Maps and Legends: The Story of R.E.M. by John Hunter, the most comprehensive biography of R.E.M. yet published. Maps and Legends covers not just the band’s entire career, from Radio Free Europe to Collapse Into Now, but also delves deeply into the childhoods of each of the band members. It tells the story of each of the teenage bands one or more of the members played in before R.E.M. – among them Bad Habits, Shadowfax, the Back Door Band, Gangster, and the Wuoggerz – and concludes with a detailed look at the solo work of Peter Buck, Mike Mills, and Michael Stipe.
Author John Hunter was born in 1968 in Raleigh, North Carolina. At the age of sixteen, he began to sneak into local clubs such as the Brewery and the Cat’s Cradle, where he saw artists ranging from Black Flag, Hüsker Dü, and the Replacements to the dB’s, Let’s Active, and the Connells. From 1986 to 1991, he studied English at the University of Georgia, during which time he also performed at the 40 Watt Club, Uptown Lounge, and Rockfish Palace. He witnessed firsthand major events in R.E.M.’s career and in the larger Athens music scene during the second half of the 1980s.
To research Maps and Legends, Hunter pored through over a thousand original newspaper and magazine articles about R.E.M., and watched and listened to hundreds of video and audio interviews with the band. He also conducted new / original interviews with eyewitness sources and members of the band’s inner circle, ranging from high school classmates, bandmates, and friends of Peter Buck and Michael Stipe, to Hib-Tone Records founder Jonny Hibbert and the band’s catalyst Kathleen O’Brien, to Jeff Walls of Guadalcanal Diary and R.E.M. producer John Keane.
Maps and Legends, a whopping 706-page 6” x 9” trade paperback, will be available at select retailers and online outlets on August 2nd. It is also available as an e-book from the Apple store in the following fifteen countries: Australia, Austria, Canada, France, Germany, Ireland, Italy, Japan, the Netherlands, New Zealand, Poland, Portugal, Spain, the United Kingdom, and the United States. For more details, click HERE.