All of us were admirers of this complicated and great man and although we never had a lot of contact with him, there was this one time, in London in May of 2001 on the promotour for REVEAL. The band played a wet Trafalgar Square for South Africa Freedom Day and had the honor of meeting Nelson Mandela in the embassy there. One of our best friends ever, Sue Wildish, has a touching tribute up on her blog from back home in South Africa and it seems appropriate to post about now.

One of the greatest runs of shows of R.E.M.’s history came a few years later, when we spent ten days and played several shows in Capetown, Durban and Johnannesburg. His was a mighty spirit and he inspired so many toward greater lives.