Everybody Hurts (Berry/Buck/Mills/Stipe)




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Everybody Hurts
(Berry/Buck/Mills/Stipe)

When the day is long and the night, the night is yours alone,


When you're sure you've had enough of this life, well hang on
Don't let yourself go, 'cause everybody cries and everybody hurts sometimes

Sometimes everything is wrong. Now it's time to sing along


When your day is night alone, (hold on, hold on)
If you feel like letting go, (hold on)
When you think you've had too much of this life, well hang on

'Cause everybody hurts. Take comfort in your friends


Everybody hurts. Don't throw your hand. Oh, no. Don't throw your hand
If you feel like you're alone, no, no, no, you are not alone

If you're on your own in this life, the days and nights are long,


When you think you've had too much of this life to hang on

Well, everybody hurts sometimes,


Everybody cries. And everybody hurts sometimes
And everybody hurts sometimes. So, hold on, hold on
Hold on, hold on, hold on, hold on, hold on, hold on
Everybody hurts. You are not alone


R.E.M.
Bill Berry
Peter Buck
Mike Mills
Michael Stipe
(and)Bertis Downs, Jefferson Holt

PRODUCED BY:


Scott Litt and R.E.M.
ENGINEERED BY:
Clif Norrell
MIXED BY:
Scott Litt and Clif Norrell
RECORDED:
Bearsville Studio, Bearsville, New York
SECOND ENGINEER:
George Cowan
Criteria Recording Studios, Miami, Florida
SECOND ENGINEER:
Andrew Roshberg
ADDITIONAL RECORDING:
John Keane Studio, Athens, Georgia
ENGINEER:
John Keane
Kingsway Studio, New Orleans, Louisiana
SECOND ENGINEER:
Mark Howard
Bosstown Recording Studio, Atlanta, Georgia
SECOND ENGINEER:
Ted Malia
MIXED:
Bad Animals/ Seattle, Washington
SECOND ENGINEER:
Ed Brooks
ASSISTANT ENGINEER:
Tod Lemkuhl
MASTERED BY:
Stephen Marcussen At Precision Mastering
TECHNICAL ASSISTANCE:
Mark Mytrowitz (Microwave)
DRUM TECHNICIAN:
Robert Hall
ORCHESTRAL ARRANGEMENTS BY:
John Paul Jones
(Drive, Everybody Hurts, The Sidewinder
Sleeps Tonite and Nightswimming)
SESSION PLAYERS:
VIOLINS:
Lonnie Ottzen, Denise Berginson-Smith, Judy
Taylor, Sou-Chun Su, Sandy Salzinger, Patti
Gouvas
VIOLAS:
Paul Murphy (Leader), Reid Harris, Heidi
Nitchie
CELLOS:
Elizabeth Proctor Murphy, Kathleen Kee,
Daniel Laufer
OBOE:
Deborah Workman
CONDUCTOR:
George Hanson
ADDITIONAL MUSICIANS:
Cello- Knox Chandler (Monty Got A Raw
Deal and Sweetness Follows)
HARMONICA AND CLARINET: Scott Litt
(Ignoreland)
PACKAGING: PHOTOGRAPHS BY:
Anton Corbijn
ART DIRECTION AND DESIGN:
Tom Recchion and Michael Stipe
BACK COVER PHOTOS:
Fedrix Nilsen
COMPUTER IMAGING:
Ceil Juanarena- Insight Communications
R.E.M. OFFICE:
D.B. Kilpatrick, B.C. Johnson, M.D. Williams,
M.L. Rawson
ALL SONGS:
Berry, Buck, Mills, Stipe

"Automatic for the People" is the Motto and


Service Mark of Weaver D's Delicious Fine
Foods in Clarke County, Georgia. A gracious
thanks to Weaver D and His Great
Establishment. "Automatic for the People!"

Analysis of ‘Everybody’ Hurts performed by Bill Berry, Peter Buck, Mike Mills and Michael Stipe (REM)
The song ‘ “was written for teenagers basically, saying don’t kill yourself,” Stipe told Robert Hilburn in the Los Angeles Times. “My sister is a teacher and someone she knows, who is 15, tried to kill himself, and it led to this song. The idea was to write something that would appeal to someone who is having trouble…so that if they hear the song, they might be able to say, ‘God, that’s me,’ and feel some sense of hope or that someone might care about them…”He [Michael Stipe] wanted [the song] to reach teenagers and not be misunderstood,” Buck told Jim Irvin in Mojo. “You don’t want something that needs a Math degree to go through when you’re trying to reach a 17-year-old and say, ‘It’s OK, things are tough but they get better.’ There’s not a line out of place.”’ (Rosen, C. (1997). The stories behind every song: R.E.M. Inside Out. Sydney: HarperCollins Publishers., p127)


Everybody Hurts’

Lyrics: Written language

Song: Audio (musical) features

Video clip: Visual (moving image), gestural and spatial features

When the day is long and the night, the night is yours alone,/

When you're sure you've had enough of this life, well hang on/


Don't let yourself go, 'cause everybody cries and everybody hurts sometimes/

Line 1: Circumstance of time only; note use of repetition (the night)
Line 2: Circumstance of time; use of continuative (well); hang on: Behavioural Process (phrasal verb) – principal clause in imperative mood (command)
Line 3: Process thematised in principal clause – Imperative mood (command – plea?) – adverbial clause of reason; conjunction (because) shortened to ‘cause

Line 1: At first, only voice, guitar (plucking individual notes at first) and keyboard can be heard; use of ‘thin’ musical texture – reinforces sense of loneliness and isolation carried in the lyrics (“word painting”)
Line 1: During When the day, the melody reaches an interval of a Minor 7th – has to be resolved somehow, usually downward in pitch – this interval becomes something of a feature of the piece

Lines 1 and 2: sung in a Major key – ‘brighter’ sound; instrumentation ‘thin’ (few notes in the chords)
End of line 2: After end of line 2, there is a descending bass line leading to Minor chords; complete silence (rest) before sometimes – draws attention to the final word of the line
Line 3 over page…/

Line 3: Use of ‘darker’ minor chords; chords are ‘thicker’ (guitar is being strummed; there are more notes in the chords) – gives the music a fuller, darker feel

Line 1:

  • Close up, overhead shot of middle line of road flashing past – pan up to inside of car. This is shown in silence for some seconds before music starts.

  • See backs/sides of heads of band

  • As lyrics start – close up of hand

  • At night is yours alone: overhead shot of cars on freeway


Line 2:

  • As line begins – close up of hand on dashboard

  • Thoughts start to appear on screen as camera tracks slowly past windows of cars at eye level. Camera acts as an observer, a spy. [Throughout the clip, the camera is moving almost constantly; it’s fluid, doesn’t linger too long on any person or scene.]

Sometimes everything is wrong. Now it’s time to sing along/
When your day is night alone, (hold on, hold on)/

If you feel like letting go, (hold on)/


When you think you’ve had too much of this life, well hang on/

Line 4: Two clauses; Circumstances of time (sometimes; now) thematised; use of declarative mood (statement) – for both clause on this line
Lines 5 - 7: a series of Circumstances (time and conditional) followed by a repeat of the continuative (well) and command/plea to hang on. In addition, the command/plea hold on is placed in brackets at the end of lines 2 and 3




Line 4:

  • First sight of man on bridge ripping pages from book (Bible?)

‘Cause everybody hurts. Take comfort in your friends/

Everybody hurts. Don’t throw your hand. Oh, no. Don’t throw your hand/

If you feel like you’re alone, no, no, no, you are not alone/


Line 8: Begins with a sentence fragment – isolated Circumstance of reason; followed by simple sentence written in imperative mood
Line 9: three clauses and one minor clause (Oh, no); first clause is a statement; repetition of Don’t throw your hand – imperative mood
Line 10: Circumstance of condition thematised; repetition of no; use of declarative mood

Line 8: Strings added – more mellow timbre (more emotional); gives music a ‘thicker’ texture

Line 9: Drum kit added on Don’t, building to climax
Line 10: strings played ‘pizzicato’ (strings are plucked) – repetition of plucking links to repetition of no, no, no; rest (silence) at end of line
Through stanza: block chords on beat; increased number of notes on string melody along with ‘thicker’ chords gives a sense of the song’s pace moving along, speeding up – aural illusion

Line 8: Stipe leaves car. He has black hat on, and is wearing a black/dark blue suit – reminiscent of old-style preacher.
Line 9: Stipe steps on to bumper of yellow car, walks up boot, onto roof of car. He crosses his hands in front of his thighs and stoops slightly. Stipe shown in low shot from rear.

If you’re on your own in this life, the days and nights are long,/

When you think you’ve had too much of this life to hang on/



Line 11: Circumstance of condition thematised; use of declarative mood
Line 12: Circumstance of time followed by imperative clause (repetition of hang on)

Line 11 and 12: ‘thinner’ texture; returns to sense of isolation and loneliness


Line 12: One of the band members lying on back on roof of car with arms spread out – body forms a crucifix.

Well, everybody hurts sometimes,

Everybody cries. And everybody hurts sometimes

And everybody hurts sometimes. So, hold on, hold on/

Hold on, hold on, hold on, hold on, hold on, hold on/



Everybody hurts. You are not alone/

Line 13: continuative (well) followed by statement (declarative mood)
Line 14: two statements (declarative mood); use of And – adding information, connects the second clause to the first; finishes with Circumstance of time (sometimes) as qualification
Line 15: Use of And connecting this line to previous; first clause a statement (imperative mood) – repetition of previous clause; followed by conjunction So (signaling cause-effect?) and repetition of command/plea
Line 16: repetition of command/plea

Line 17: two statements to finish

Line 13: return to ‘thick’ texture

Line 14: rest before sometimes

Line 16 and 17: The song finishes with a fade out (to keep it in people’s heads) – invitation to the listener to keep singing (compare with statement in Line 4: Now it’s time to sing along)

Line 13: Obscured view of statue of Jesus wearing red cloak on back shelf of car as camera pans past.

Line 14: Close up of hand dangling over edge of car roof – assume it’s band member in crucifix position.


Line 15: At So, Stipe lifts his head and starts lip synching. People start climbing out of cars – overhead shot, camera rotating slowly.

Line 16: Long shot of Stipe – he’s wearing a buttoned up black/dark blue suit, white shirt buttoned at collar, but no tie (unlike other band members shown) and hat – increases preacher appearance. Public who have climbed out of cars starting walking along the freeway, away from their cars – this is shown mainly via overhead shot, or low angle shots that only partially show people’s bodies in close up; faces hardly seen at all. Band members walk along elevated, concrete barrier.
General: Lots of close ups of people’s (pained) faces during this stanza.

General comments

  • Use of general, anonymous Participants – ‘universalises’ the lyrics (could apply to anyone)

  • ‘Speaker’ appears to be someone who believes they have more power, especially in terms of knowledge/wisdom – assumption that commanding/pleading is the way to achieve behavioural/mental change in addressee (teens 15-17 years of age)

  • Direct addressing of listener through use of second person (you) who is assumed to be lonely, isolated, hurting and ready to give up

  • Use of informal, colloquial vocabulary, e.g. well, hang on, ‘cause, you’re, throw your hand

  • Euphemistic reference to suicide and self-harm, i.e. had enough of this life, don’t let yourself go, don’t throw your hand, hang on

  • Quite a lot of repetition – especially everybody hurts, don’t throw your hands up, no and hold on

  • Simple, everyday vocabulary

  • Processes (verbs) almost exclusively to do with feelings and existing

  • Overall sense of urgency in lyrics

  • ‘Tick, tick’ sound (heard faintly in background) produced by electronic keyboard in – suggests ticking away of time?

  • Michael Stipe (lead singer) hits exact pitch but ‘slides’ to get to it

  • Michael Stipe uses what he refers to as his “soul voice”; his voice has also been called a ‘dramatic lead vocal’

  • Musically, there is a great deal of repetition of patterns and chords


Many thanks to Catherine McCarthy, Arts HOD at Wynnum State High School for her invaluable assistance analyzing the musical features.

A scene is added at the end as the lyrics and music fade out: overhead, fuzzy/static-riddled shot of cars deserted on freeway. Helicopter noises and frantic voice of newsreader: “We have no official explanation…They just got out and walked…God, we’ve gotten confirmation…We cannot find anyone. I’ve never seen anything like this…”
General comments:

  • There are lots of close ups of melancholy faces and close ups of hands.

  • Colour palette is restricted with blues predominating (particularly for clothes); occasional flashes of other colours (especially red cars and lipstick) are seen. The band is in black/navy blue. Shadows are burned in and quite black.

  • The freeway is concrete and asphalt – lifeless except for people and one tree on the back of a truck.

  • There are a mix of men and women, but some Latinos.


Note: Director of video is Ridley Scott’s son, Jake. Ridley Scott directed Aliens and Gladiator, amongst others. Does this mean anything? Who knows.

Appendix: Words seen along bottom of screen
Key

Boxed and bolded words: lyrics from the song which are both sung and appear on screen.

Bolded words in square brackets: New words; appear on screen. Note: The placement is approximate only.
When the day is long and the night, the night is yours alone,
When you're sure [They’re all stuck.] you've had enough of this life [Look at me.], well hang on
[Silence is gray.] Don't let yourself [Silence is golden.] go, [Silence is a stone in my mouth.] 'cause everybody cries [Nobody can see me. I had no idea.] and [They’re going to miss me.] everybody hurts sometimes [Here we go again.] [What is she thinking?]

[17 years…] Sometimes everything is wrong. [If I had a gun.] Now it's time to sing along [Hom’m I going to do this?]
When your day is night alone, (hold on, hold on) [Lead me to the rock that is higher than I.]
[They that sow in tears shall reap in joy.]
If you feel like letting go, (hold on)
When you think you've had too much of this life, well hang on [Stop singing. Stop singing. Stop singing. Stop singing.] [You die, you turn to dust.]

'Cause everybody hurts. Take comfort in your friends
Everybody hurts. Don't throw your hand. [I’ll talk when I want to.] Oh, no. Don't throw your hand
If you feel like you're alone, no, no, no, [Why don’t you answer me?] you are not alone

If you're on your own in this life, [Vamos a perder toda neustra dignidad. No tenemos mas tiempo. Translation: We will lose all dignity. We have no more time.] the days and nights are long, [No more tears.]
When you think you've had too much of this life to hang on

[Then can I grieve…at grievances foregone.] Well, everybody hurts sometimes,
Everybody cries. And everybody [She’s gone. Goodbye.] hurts sometimes [Leave me alone.] [There’s nothing I can do.]
And everybody hurts sometimes. So, hold on, hold on
Hold on, hold on, hold on, hold on, hold on, hold on
Everybody hurts. You are not alone




Analysis on pages 3 to 7: © L & E Williams Holdings Pty Ltd, 2009. May be reproduced for use in classrooms.


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