Last month, Michael Stipe, former frontman of the now-defunct seminal alternative rock outfit R.E.M. stopped by the Stephen Colbert show for a special tribute from the man himself. Check out a video of Stipe performing Bill Withers’ “Lean on Me” with Colbert and famed English artist Brian Eno.
Stipe’s appearance on Colbert resulted in a complete memorialization of the former R.E.M. frontman, along with his principle group. Colbert went so far as to put Stipe’s book on his own bookshelf—a rare honor for guests. Not only that, but Colbert also put Stipe himself on his newly minted “Rock and Roll Shelf of Fame.”
Colbert’s memorial speech was equally quirky, with the host referring to the group as “the R.E.M.s” and calling them a “hugely influential band” that is “known for their strong political views like their support of gun rights on their album Automatic for the People.”
To close out the show, Stipe suggested that he, Colbert and Eno perform a special rendition of Bill Withers’ “Lean on Me.” Check out the special engagement below: