"Just A Touch" as written by and Peter Buck Bill Berry....
Well what in the world? Women in black
Don't you remember Sonny's packed
A day in the life well nobody laughed
Look to the days how long can this last

Kevin heard it on the radio
Hugh informed word of mouth
Carla read it in the news
Caught it all just a touch

You set the pace of what was to come
I have to carry on now that you're gone
A day in the life well nobody laughed
Look to the days how long can this last

There's someone in our dreams
In our preassembled dream
Lord! Dave! William!

Well what in the world? Women in black
Don't you remember, Sonny's, Tyrone's, packed, packed
A day in the life well nobody laughed
Look to the days how long can this last

I can't see where to worship Popeye, love Al Green,
I can't see, I'm so young, I'm so god damn young


Lyrics submitted by xpankfrisst

"Just a Touch" as written by Peter Buck Bill Berry

Lyrics © Warner/Chappell Music, Inc., Universal Music Publishing Group

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Just A Touch song meanings
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7 Comments

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  • 0
    General CommentOh god, I fall of my chair every single time I hear that little "There's someone in our dreams" section. It's the perfect use of self-quotation... I mean right around this point in the album you start to think "gee, these guys sure have changed since their Murmur days" and suddenly, out of nowhere, they quote the melody from Radio Free Europe. Ahh, I digress. I just love that part. Pretty cool song, too.
    MickeyPhillyon August 07, 2007   Link
  • 0
    General CommentThis is a song about the reactions people had upon hearing about the sudden death of the original King, Elvis Presley, and the immediate subsequent reactions of learning about it. with that context in mind, go back and read the lyrics and it all makes perfect sense. And BTW - Stipe was a big fan of Elvis as a kid.
    peacefrogxon October 10, 2007   Link
  • 0
    General CommentI remember seeing REM in the late 80's in New Haven, CT. He told a story about seeing an Elvis impersonator they night Elvis died. He had literally crumpled to the floor on stage (ie the impersonator in this story.) The name of the impersonators show was Just a Touch.
    REMFIELDon October 14, 2007   Link
  • 0
    General CommentHe meaning 'Michael Stipe"
    REMFIELDon October 14, 2007   Link
  • 0
    General CommentWell, it could well be about Elvis, but signs point to the fact this was the first song R.E.M. ever wrote. It was performed in 1980 at the band's first gig but not recorded till several albums later. The 'i'm so god damn young' and 'how long can this last' probably indicate they didn't take themselves too seriously at this point.

    The chorus featuring the names is the sort of typical rockabilly/new wave type thing that was popular back then and is similar to such things as 52 Girls by The B-52's.

    So he doesn't quote the melody from Radio Free Europe- this is the original source of it.

    With all that said, i love this song. It is one of a few examples where R.E.M.'s punk influences are heard.
    onionmasteron December 04, 2009   Link
  • 0
    General CommentI might add that R.E.M. are well known for rerecording things that they've rewritten, like Ages Of You's early version Burning Down and ITEOTWAWKI's early version Bad Day. It's as alternative and in love with the music as you can get.
    onionmasteron December 04, 2009   Link
  • 0
    General CommentThe "I'm so young" line is a direct reference to Patti Smith's 1976 version of "My Generation".
    ignatzkaton January 14, 2010   Link

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