Michael Stipe Performs Rare Solo Set
30 December 2014, 12:06
The former REM frontman played a surprise set in New York, supporting Patti Smith - and he even played some of his old band's favourite tracks
A few weeks ago Michael Stipe revealed "I think I will sing again" and now we know what the ex-REM frontman meant: a secret opening set for the iconic Patti Smith.
Smith was playing a show at New York's Webster Hall and fans who got there early were rewarded with a bearded, hat-wearing Michael Stipe performing unannounced.
Stipe played six songs in the short set, including New Test Leper and Saturn Return by REM. He also did songs by Perfume Genius, Vic Chesnutt and Smith herself. He even found time for a cover of New York, New York, which can you see a taste of below.
Earlier this month Stipe ruled out a reunion of REM, the subject of a new documentary and DVD boxset following the group's history, saying "there's no point".