How To Play Losing My Religion On The Guitar By R.E.M


R.E.M. was an alt-rock band formed in 1980 in Athens, Georgia. They were one of the first alt-rock bands in history, and they quickly became popular across the globe. In 1991, the album Out of Time was released, and with it, the hit single Losing My Religion.

The song became rather popular thanks to its video, which received praises from critics. The music video was directed by Tarsem Singh, and he and Michale Stipe (lead singer) were behind the idea. Surprisingly enough, Warner Bros., the record label, didn’t like the idea that Losing My Religion would be the band’s first single. 

They believed that the song is unconventional and that they should stick to something a bit more traditional. Considering that this track is probably the most popular song by R.E.M., they made a smart decision to allow it as the lead single. The song became the band’s highest charted hit, and it introduced their repertoire to a wider audience. 

The entire structure of the song is based on the intro riff, and it’s played on the mandolin. While the title might lead people to think otherwise, the song is, in fact, not about religion. It means losing temper or civility.

Guitar Chords

You need to master these chords in order to play the songs.

Strumming Pattern

After you mastered the chords you can learn the strumming pattern of this song. You can practice the downstrokes and upstrokes just on a single chord or even on muted strings.

The strumming pattern divided into two parts. Start practicing the first one and then move to the second. After mastering both of them separately, combine them and play them one after another. The pattern played on throughout the entire song.

Main Chord Progression & Strumming Pattern

Once you master the strumming pattern you can combine it with the chords. The following strumming pattern is the main pattern and chord progression and make almost 90% of the song.

It is simple enough even for the absolute beginners. So before learning the entire song first master the main chord progression.

Losing My Religion Tabs & Lyrics

Intro

The first two measurements of the intro have slightly different timing to the chord changes. But the strumming pattern is still the same.

Verse 1

    Am
Oh, life is bigger
Em
It's bigger than you
            Am
And you are not me
                        Em
The lengths that I will go to
                       Am
The distance in your eyes
Em                   Dm
Oh no, I've said too much
          G
I set it up

Pre Chorus

                  Am
That's me in the corner
                  Em
That's me in the spotlight
              Am
Losing my religion
           Em
Trying to keep up with you
       Am
And I don't know if I can do it
Em                  Dm
Oh no I've said too much
                  G
I haven't said enough

Chorus

   G                         F
I thought that I heard you laughing
                   G        Am
I thought that I heard you sing
   F                     G   Am
I think I thought I saw you try

Verse 2

          Am                   Em
Every whisper of every waking hour
                   Am
I'm choosing my confessions,
          Em
Trying to keep an eye on you
       Am                                 Em
Like a hurt lost and blinded fool, fool
                     Dm
Oh no, I've said too much,
         G
I set it up.
         Am
Consider this, consider this,
    Em
The hint of a century,
         Am
Consider this: the slip
     Em
That brought me to my knees failed.
Am
What if all these fantasies
     Em
Come    flailing around?
         Dm       G
Now I've said too much.

Chorus

   G                         F
I thought that I heard you laughing
                   G        Am
I thought that I heard you sing
   F                     G   Am
I think I thought I saw you try

Solo

When the solo is played, the other guitar strums the chord mentioned about the appropriate note with just one downstroke.

Bridge

     C               Dm
But that was just a dream,
C               Dm
That was just a dream.

Pre Chorus

                  Am
That's me in the corner
                  Em
That's me in the spotlight
              Am
Losing my religion
           Em
Trying to keep up with you
       Am
And I don't know if I can do it
Em                  Dm
Oh no I've said too much
                  G
I haven't said enough

Chorus

     G                       F
I thought that I heard you laughing
                   G        Am
I thought that I heard you sing
   F                     G   Am
I think I thought I saw you try
 
     F                    G  Am
But that was just a dream,   try, cry, why, try
F                      G      Am            G
That was just a dream, just a dream, just a dream, Dream

Outro

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Jacob

I have been playing guitar since 2004. As long as I can remember I always had a huge passion for rock music and I extremely enjoy playing it. Helping people on their rock journey is what drives me to keep on playing. Read More About Me

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