The Great Beyond


"The Great Beyond" is a song by R.E.M. written specifically for the 1999 film Man on the Moon. It was released as a single the following year for support of the film's soundtrack album. On the soundtrack, there is some dialogue from the movie at the end of the track; meanwhile, the single version is a radio edit, with the bridge omitted.

"The Great Beyond"
Single by R.E.M.
from the album Man on the Moon (Music from the Motion Picture)
B-side
ReleasedNovember 16, 1999 (1999-11-16)
RecordedMay 1999
Genre
Length5:06 (album version)
4:14 (radio edit)
Label
Songwriter(s)
Producer(s)Pat McCarthy
R.E.M. singles chronology
"Suspicion"
(1999)
"The Great Beyond"
(1999)
"Imitation of Life"
(2001)

"The Great Beyond" reached number three on the UK Singles Chart in January 2000, the band's highest-ever chart position in that country, and it was nominated for a Grammy Award for Best Song Written for a Motion Picture, Television or Other Visual Media. It additionally became a top-20 hit in Canada, Iceland, Ireland, Italy, and Norway. The unedited version is included in two R.E.M. compilations: In Time - The Best of R.E.M. 1988-2003 and Part Lies, Part Heart, Part Truth, Part Garbage 1982–2011.

Background and content


According to the book Perfect Circle: The Story of R.E.M., the band employed their then-usual live musicians when recording the song: "To record the single, the group convened at John Keane's. Joey Waronker was brought in on drums; Scott McCaughey and Ken Stringfellow were each invited to take part; Pat McCarthy returned to the producer's chair."

In the unedited version, at 4:09 and at 4:26, the listener can hear Michael Stipe singing the following lines in the background: "Here's a little agit for the never-believer, here's a little ghost for the offering". Both lines were taken from the 1992 R.E.M. song "Man on the Moon", also about Andy Kaufman, from which the movie took its title.

Music video


The song's video was directed by Liz Friedlander. It originally featured footage of Jim Carrey as Andy Kaufman from the 1999 film. Yet, the compilation DVD In View: The Best of R.E.M. 1988-2003 (which accompanied In Time and collected R.E.M.'s major videos from 1988 to 2003), the video was remixed to feature archived footage of Kaufman himself (similar to the video for "Man on the Moon"). The original version can be seen on the Man on the Moon DVD. Carrey revealed in the 2017 documentary Jim & Andy: The Great Beyond that he had been invited to appear in the video in person, but refused, as he wished to psychologically distance himself from the Kaufman character; he stated that he now regretted the decision.[2]

Track listings


All songs written by Bill Berry, Peter Buck, Mike Mills, and Michael Stipe, except for "The Great Beyond" written by Peter Buck, Mike Mills, and Michael Stipe.

Cassette / US CD

  1. "The Great Beyond" (Radio Edit) – 4:14
  2. "Man on the Moon"[3] – 5:24

UK CD

  1. "The Great Beyond" (Radio Edit) – 4:14
  2. "Everybody Hurts" (Live)[3] – 6:20
  3. "The One I Love" (Live)[3] – 3:10

Maxi-CD

  1. "The Great Beyond" (Radio Edit) – 4:14
  2. "The One I Love" (Live)[3] – 3:10
  3. "Everybody Hurts" (Live)[3] – 6:20
  4. "Man on the Moon" (Live)[3] – 5:24

Charts


Other versions


In June 2003, Michael Stipe sang an a cappella excerpt from the song for a BBC Radio 2 advertisement.[25] He performed it on a stage in an empty theater. Welsh progressive breakbeat producers Hybrid later would use this a cappella to create a bootleg remix.[26] A live version of this song is included on R.E.M. Live. The song was covered by The Fray in 2007 for the compilation album Radio 1: Established 1967.

References


  1. https://www.telegraph.co.uk/films/0/best-pop-songs-written-movies/42-great-beyond-rem/
  2. https://variety.com/2017/film/reviews/jim-andy-the-great-beyond-review-jim-carrey-andy-kaufman-1202547073/https://variety.com/2017/film/reviews/jim-andy-the-great-beyond-review-jim-carrey-andy-kaufman-1202547073/
  3. Recorded at the Glastonbury Festival, Somerset, England; June 25, 1999
  4. "Australian-charts.com – R.E.M. – The Great Beyond". ARIA Top 50 Singles. Retrieved January 13, 2018.
  5. "Top RPM Singles: Issue 9723." RPM. Library and Archives Canada. Retrieved March 18, 2018.
  6. "Top RPM Adult Contemporary: Issue 9751." RPM. Library and Archives Canada. Retrieved March 18, 2018.
  7. "Top RPM Rock/Alternative Tracks: Issue 10022." RPM. Library and Archives Canada. Retrieved March 18, 2018.
  8. "Eurochart Hot 100 Singles" (PDF). Music & Media. Vol. 17 no. 7. February 12, 2000. p. 11. Retrieved June 19, 2020.
  9. "Offiziellecharts.de – R.E.M. – The Great Beyond" (in German). GfK Entertainment Charts. Retrieved October 23, 2018.
  10. "Íslenski Listinn Topp 20 (4.2– 10.2 2000)". Dagblaðið Vísir (in Icelandic). February 4, 2000. p. 10. Retrieved October 6, 2019.
  11. "The Irish Charts – Search Results – The Great Beyond". Irish Singles Chart. Retrieved March 18, 2018.
  12. "Italiancharts.com – R.E.M. – The Great Beyond". Top Digital Download. Retrieved January 13, 2018.
  13. "Dutchcharts.nl – R.E.M. – The Great Beyond" (in Dutch). Single Top 100. Retrieved January 13, 2018.
  14. "Norwegiancharts.com – R.E.M. – The Great Beyond". VG-lista. Retrieved January 13, 2018.
  15. "Official Scottish Singles Sales Chart Top 100". Official Charts Company. Retrieved January 13, 2018.
  16. "Swedishcharts.com – R.E.M. – The Great Beyond". Singles Top 100. Retrieved January 13, 2018.
  17. "Swisscharts.com – R.E.M. – The Great Beyond". Swiss Singles Chart. Retrieved January 13, 2018.
  18. "Official Singles Chart Top 100". Official Charts Company. Retrieved January 13, 2018.
  19. "R.E.M. Chart History (Hot 100)". Billboard. Retrieved January 13, 2018.
  20. "R.E.M. Chart History (Adult Alternative Songs)". Billboard. Retrieved January 13, 2018.
  21. "R.E.M. Chart History (Adult Pop Songs)". Billboard. Retrieved January 13, 2018.
  22. "R.E.M. Chart History (Alternative Airplay)". Billboard. Retrieved January 13, 2018.
  23. "R.E.M. Chart History (Mainstream Rock)". Billboard. Retrieved January 13, 2018.
  24. "Íslenski Listinn Topp 100". Dagblaðið Vísir (in Icelandic). January 5, 2001. p. 10. Retrieved February 8, 2020.
  25. "Radio 2 TV ads reflect its unique positioning" – www.campaignlive.com
  26. "Archived copy". Archived from the original on January 6, 2011. Retrieved August 11, 2013.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)