R.E.M. was an American rock band from Athens, Georgia, formed in 1980 by drummer Bill Berry, guitarist Peter Buck, bassist Mike Mills and lead vocalist Michael Stipe who were students at the same university. 

Being one of the first alternative rock bands, R.E.M. was noted for Buck's ringing, arpeggiated guitar style; Stipe's distinctive vocal quality, unique stage presence and obscure lyrics; Mills's melodic bass lines and backing vocals and Berry's tight drumming style. 

In the early 1990s, other alternative rock acts such as Nirvana and Pavement viewed R.E.M. as a pioneer of the Alt-Rock genre.

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