"After all the years we've been a band, the one thing I know we have in common is that we stay up all night and sleep in the day. Also, we're all incredibly stubborn, so I guess that's two things. Anyway, I think this song perfectly captures that woozy, sea sick feeling you get during the daylight hours when you haven't slept." - Peter Buck
"I think it's about the sort of alien nature of a night shift. The weird lighting, the fluorescent lights that you find and the isolation of working the graveyard shift - how it screws up your sleep patterns and that sort of thing, and I think that's the main image we're trying to get across." - Mike Mills
''I was in New York and I was walking down the steps of this building. It was probably four o'clock in the afternoon, and I come to a door and there's a sign on it that says "Daysleeper" ,and I walked a lot more carefully, quietly down the steps, thinking about that poor person who's trying to sleep, and me and my big old boots interrupting her sleep. So I wrote this song about a daysleeper that's working an 11–7 shift and how furious the balance is between the life that you live and the work that you have to do in order to support the life that you live.'' - Michael Stipe
''THE STORY BEHIND THE SONG''
(click on the image)