March 2, 2009

this would be so much easier if i were on drugs (new PJ contest!)


If someone can either explain to me how to crack the new Pearl Jam 3D Rubix Cube Matrix game, or give me some private lessons, or possibly powerful mind-clarifying substances — that would be much appreciated. To not excel at something Pearl-Jam-related is maddening. Ha. At least the soundtrack is good… if I could get past level one it might be even better.

Pearl Jam is reissuing 1991′s Ten this month, and I am very excited to have one of the Legacy Editions to give away in my first official Pearl Jam contest. Whee! Been waiting for this since I was 13.

Win a Ten Legacy Edition (2-disc set in mini-LP style slipcase)

· Disc 1: original Ten tracklisting digitally remastered (original mix)
· Disc 2: original Ten tracklisting digitally remastered and remixed by Brendan O’Brien, plus six bonus tracks: “Brother,” “Just a Girl,” “State of Love and Trust,” “Breath,” “2,000 Mile Blues” and “Evil Little Goat”
· Re-designed packaging


If you’d like to enter to win, leave me a comment with your favorite Pearl Jam moment from any of their songs — live version, album version, full stanza, exhalation, guitar solo, scream — have at it. I just mostly like talking about this stuff. The various rad reissues come out March 24th, and this contest runs through Sunday night.

Also, speaking of Brendan O’Brien and his remix work on the reissue, I was just reading tonight in the Rolling Stone with the (excellent & eloquent) Sean Penn interview about O’Brien’s reprisal on the new PJ album due later this year, and I hear a fall tour may be in the works. A September show in Colorado would be so nice, don’t you think? Hmm.

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  • Wow! First! Hehe. :)

    My fave Pearl Jam song of all time has always been Elderly Woman… and I love the intro where he says “now it’s time for longest song name in the Pearl Jam catalog…”

    I also LOVED seeing them this summer in Hartford where Eddie stopped Better Man after the first verse to tell us how gorgeous the whole crowd looked with their lighters out. I absolutely love seeing them live.

    Val — March 2, 2009 @ 9:10 pm

  • To pick a favorite pearl jam moment is juuuuust about impossible. As far as a moment specific to the music goes, I think it might have to be from the following phrase in Low Light until the end of the song: “Two birds is what they’ll see, Gettin’ lost upon their way…” I can’t exactly explain what it is about that song, but it can and has pulled me out of some tough times. My favorite more personal moment would have to be two summers ago, as I was set to head off to college and my brother to move out of town for a job, we took a roadtrip from Ohio to the west coast, camping and backpacking along the way. We managed to listen to every studio album multiple times along the drive, along with almost our entire combined bootleg catalog, which is pretty extensive. All I can say is if you’ve never sat down in a car with one long road stretching all the way to the Pacific and driven through the night, listening to their entire studio catalog in order, it’s something you’ve got to try.

    redmosquito10 — March 2, 2009 @ 9:15 pm

  • After 40+ shows over the lifespan of the band, I would have to say my most memorable song from any show would be Crown of Thorns being played for the first time in Las Vegas 2000.

    I remember Ed introducing the song, along with Stone and Jeff.

    It was a very memorable moment that sits with me. That song, on top of being at the 10th anniversary show was magical.

    Greg — March 2, 2009 @ 9:32 pm

  • It’s near impossible to pick a favorite moment with absolute certainty, but I still get chills listening to Daughter from Jones Beach in 2000 where they go into It’s OK by Dead Moon. The emotion Ed has when he’s singing, especially given the tragedy that occurred a few months earlier, still gives me goosebumps.

    Nick — March 2, 2009 @ 9:37 pm

  • One of my favorite moments is them doing “Masters Of War” on Letterman. It was the first time I saw them do it live (I missed it on the Dylan 30th Anniversary show). It blew me away. Also, my other favorite moment is any time they played “Bushleaguer” and wore the Bush masks.

    Matt — March 2, 2009 @ 9:40 pm

  • Pearl Jam’s cover of The Who’s Love, Reign O’er Me. Eddie redefines the word “Love” into something so painful and bittersweet every time he sings the chorus. Can’t go wrong with that cover when you’re feeling a lil’ blue.

    Daniel_S — March 2, 2009 @ 9:41 pm

  • My favourite moment of Pearl Jam would have to be the point in rearviewmirror where it comes out the misty fog of the breakdown and slams full throttle to the floor to take out the song – it is almost euphoric.

    Its particularly good live – at the Sydney show they had the strobes increasing in speed as the pace got quicker. It was breathtaking

    Jordan — March 2, 2009 @ 9:54 pm

  • jordan, closely followed by the way you can hear dave throwing the drumsticks into the wall at the end of the song.

    browneheather — March 2, 2009 @ 9:57 pm

  • I saw Pearl Jam for the first time in 2003 on the “Riot Act” tour in Philly. They opened with “Crazy Mary”, and totally blew me away. I love the song, and had no idea it was coming. It also convinced me that Boom was a great addition after being a little skeptical.

    I have to say that the official bootleg of this show is my favorite of any (and, of course, I have many) of the boots that they’ve released. Not just because it was a show that I saw, but because the playing is tight and has a great energy to it. And, they were playing the Spectrum, which Ed seemed to enjoy and made several comments about. Also, it was like I made the setlist, including the first few tracks from “Vs.”, “Spin the Black Circle”, “Save You” and “Love Boat Captain”. Tremendous. Did I mention that I really liked the show?:)

    Lloydie — March 2, 2009 @ 10:04 pm

  • My favorite moment came from a concert from 2008. They brought Kings of Leon on for their final song, Rockin’ in the Free World. It was a smashing ending to the best live show I have ever seen. Also, Eddie Vedder took off his shirt and jumped from the amps. It was a sight I will never forget.

    Faites — March 2, 2009 @ 10:10 pm

  • My favorite moment has to be 10/11/00 in St. Louis, MO, where Eddie pulled a woman on to the stage so she could sign “Given to Fly” to the deaf audience. Once the song neared its end, Eddie walked over and danced with her for a minute or so.

    It’s wonderful to have been there, even better that I can relive it on Touring Band 2000.

    Bryce — March 2, 2009 @ 10:19 pm

  • My favourite PJ moment is their performance of Nothing As It Seems live in Seattle at the end of the Binaural tour… McReady puts all the pain of his addiction through his amp in a guitar solo that lasts the entire song. Eddie goes along for the ride with a restrained but passionate vocal that makes you ache. Beautiful genius.

    Cameron — March 2, 2009 @ 10:20 pm

  • Don’t know exactly where it was but during Porch on the Immagine in Cornice DVD, eddie takes his guitar and uses it to reflect the spotlight off of him, and on to all his loyal Italian fans. This is such a poetic way for eddie to say “Hey, It’s about yall not me”. I’ve always admired his appreciation for fans.

    O, and to beat the game just pause it up in the left hand corner, find where the pieces go, and unpause it to individually place each one. (kinda cheap-ish but it works)

    Hatley — March 2, 2009 @ 11:14 pm

  • I’d be lying to you and everyone else if I pretended for even a second that my favorite PJ moment was anything other than the solo/outro of Alive. I grew up in Bakersfield, CA (Nashville West) and can remember worshiping the likes of Garth Brooks, Reba McEntire and Alabama. Alternative rock was completely foreign to me.

    All of that changed in January 2000; I was 18 at the time and i an attempt at brevity I will just say my life was starting to rapidly unwind and to get away I had gone to the gym. I was pulling out of the parking lot and on the radio was the local country station KUZZ. I was tired of the same old songs so I hit the seldomly used “scan” button. It landed on KRAB 106.1. Having recently decided to learn how to play the guitar, I was absolutley floored by what I heard. I didn’t know what song I was listening to or what band it was, but it was beautiful. I quickly pulled my taurus over and just sat there, listening to the last 2 minutes of what I would soon find out, thanks to the DJ, was the ‘classic “Alive” by Pearl Jam’. The guitar playing was unabashedly perfect, the rhythm section holding the song together with those simple, yet thunderous four chords while some maniac screamed over the top of it all…truly sublime. I wondered where they had been my whole life, why hadn’t I known who they were?

    An hour later I was on my way to the hospital to see my mom. I stopped at the “Wooden Nickel” to see if they had any used PJ cds. They had two behind the Pearl Jam tab. The first was Live on Two Legs, the second was Temple of the Dog. I got both for something like 12 bucks. I put in Live on Two Legs and was hooked. A week later my mom died, and I put in Temple of the Dog for the first time on my way home from the hospital, the first song was “Say Hello 2 Heaven”. I was never the same. From that day forward Pearl Jam was MY band. And it all goes back to that 2 minute solo, by a band and guitar player I’m now embarrassed to say that I didn’t even know.

    I see the other moments that people have commented on and each is so great in their own right, but like I said, I’d be remiss if I didn’t give credit to the moment that ignited the PJ fire deep down inside, the moment that spawned countless other moments.

    jordan lewis — March 2, 2009 @ 11:32 pm

  • 2:43 into rearview mirror when he starts singing “saw things” which gives way to an amazing guitar line and Eddie howling “Clearer, CLEARER CLEARER….”
    That second half of the song is enough to wake me from a dead sleep, fill me full of energy and let me run a ten K after 3 days of no sleep.
    ’nuff said.

    David Iskra — March 2, 2009 @ 11:37 pm

  • In summer 2000 they headlined the Rock Am Ring festival in Germany, one of the largest open air events in Europe.

    The venue actually sits on top of a little hillside, so you can see for miles into the valleys and we started to get sheet lightenings all around after a couple of songs.

    This was the most immersive light show I experienced ever (in over 500 concerts) and together with Pearl Jam jamming along in a total state of trance, I almost weeped of joy.

    The moment when they started into “Given to fly” – the song which is MY pearl jam song which helped through loads of bad times – and the sky was just an artwork of red and blue and sparkes …. magic. pure magic.

    Sebastian — March 3, 2009 @ 1:39 am

  • Definitely Lollapalooza ’92, Molson Park in Barrie, Ontario… I was there, a 17 yr old super-fan in my prototypical black PJ Alive t-shirt, flannel shirt and Doc Martens, never more in love with life, music or the world as when they took the stage.

    Two defining moments… In the middle of Garden, things were getting a little too intense in the pit, so Eddie stopped everybody mid-song and asked us to take better care of each other, saying “A song ain’t nothin’ compared to a human life.”…

    The best came near then end when Eddie decided to climb the scaffolding stage right, skitter across the top of the light-racks over the stage, descend stage left, and dive from a story up onto the heaving ocean of 60 thousand outstretched arms. The thrill and the fear that I had as he was literally 100s of feet over the stage, jumping from scaffold to scaffold, thinking one mis-step everything I cared about at that moment in the universe would be suddenly and horrifically over, was something I will never forget. Still gives me shivers.

    Bill — March 3, 2009 @ 3:24 am

  • The first time that I heard Ten was while driving back down the Keys after a long day of spear fishing. We were zombie tired and I was trying to find a way to stay awake. I remember hearing the guitar line under the vocals at the beginning of ‘Porch’ and being confused at the way that the angry guitar and Ed’s angry voice were together fighting something that I couldn’t make out at that first listen. The guitar line conveys that anger every time I hear it, but it always brings me back to wonderful, magic days.

    Ben — March 3, 2009 @ 3:38 am

  • My favourite moment was at the Nijmegen gig in 2007. They invited the family of the Dutch guy who died in the whole Roskilde thing and talked to his family and friends.

    The crowd gave a standing ovation for a few minutes after which they played (i believe it was) better man. It was a request from his sister.

    Maarten — March 3, 2009 @ 3:41 am

  • My Fav moment would be following the guys around Australia on their 2003 tour on my shoe string budget, meeting some great PJ fans & waiting outside Adelaide Entertainment centre till 2 am and meeting Ed. It was an amazing time :)
    Ohh and for those that don’t mind cheating


    Luke — March 3, 2009 @ 4:19 am

  • “drop-drop-dropping it down”
    in Spin The Black Circle is my favorite PJ moment. Takes me back to being a kid and parental supervision being required for me to use Mom’s turntable.

    Kevin Rupe — March 3, 2009 @ 6:21 am

  • It’s a toss-up – both from the Touring Band DVD. The gal doing sign-language to “Given To Fly” always blows me away, but then again, so do the montages, especially the one set to “Thunderclap,” my favorite instrumental thing I’ve heard from them.

    Dusty — March 3, 2009 @ 6:40 am

  • This answer would change on an almost daily basis, but when I think about the nexus of my Pearl Jam fandom, I always come back to Yield.

    Those raunchy chords and the quickly delivered “1, 2, 3, 4, 1, 2, 3, 4″ on “Brain of J” signaled the beginning of a new era of musical discovery for me.

    Chase — March 3, 2009 @ 6:45 am

  • so many moments, so many shows–how can i pick just one?
    I think my favorite all time moment comes form the Garden Show in 2003 (same one the DVD “Live at the Garden” comes from), when Eddie starts talking about how the stage is shaking because the audience is rocking out so hard! yes! and that the guys backstage told the boys that they had only seen this twice before: Once for Iron Maiden, and once for Bruce Springsteen. Which, Eddie pointed out, put the band in really good company.
    There are so many highlights to the show. another that stands out is when Ed talks about dreams coming true, and paying homage to opening act, the Buzzcocks, saying that playing with them was a dream come true…
    And, finally, during the show, Eddie asks the crowd to sing along with him a little louder, because his brothers were in the audience.
    I feel lucky as a PJ fan to have been at that show and the one the next night, and count it among my all time concert-life highlights, even more than seeing PJ in Verona at the Arena back in 2000…Obviously, I’ve relived the event a million and a half times on CD and DVD…
    thanks for the opportunity to talk.

    Andy LaRaia — March 3, 2009 @ 7:17 am

  • Definitely hard to pick one moment…but let’s say that from all the thousands of hours of spent on listening them, long nights reading about them, gigabytes of bootlegs stored on my hard drive, days and days of traveling to see them on those 9 perfect shows in 7 countries on 2 continents, meeting dozens of really great people along the way, hearing hundreds of beautiful fan stories…my favorite moment would be standing in front row, in my home town (Zagreb, Croatia) and hugging my wife’s while she’s crying as they play her favorite song Thumbing My Way…

    mario — March 3, 2009 @ 7:22 am

  • One night while we camping, inside of the tent we were sitting passing the hash filled peace pipe, I was so lifted, I imagined seeing the image of a tree in our tent that we fittingly called cloud city. This got me into thinking about the video for “Hunger Strike” by Temple of the Dog. You know the one where Eddie Vedder and Chris Cornell are outside singing, “I’m going hungryyyy!” I told everyone in the tent how much I wanted to hear Pearl Jam right now at that moment.

    This got us into an intense conversation about Pearl Jam especially the song “Alive.” We were debating the meaning of “Alive” whether it was an uplifting or sad song. I mention to everyone the episode of Storytellers where Eddie Vedder described the lifting of the curse of “Alive.”

    So there we are in the tent really high having these really deep talks about “Alive” and we have no music, no stereo and I just want to hear the song. So at that moment I hear “Alive” in my head, from the opening guitar riff and all. I start singing the song aloud and lead the whole tent in a huge singing along. What a night!

    Adrian Cepeda — March 3, 2009 @ 7:26 am

  • I was a young 14 year old impressionable kid getting ready to finish the 8th grade in Houston, TX when my friends and I heard on the radio that Pearl Jam would be rolling into Austin on their summer tour with Bad Religion. There was no bigger band to me and my friends than Pearl Jam. We collected all the import cd singles (remember those?), bootlegs, and digipaks we could afford with our lawn mowing money, contemplating the true meaning of rarities like “Dirty Frank” and “Brother”.
    By some miracle we got through on the phone when the tickets went on sale (Remember PJ was at war with ticketmaster, and I think the show sold out in 10 minutes) and we were set to go. I went to camp the first part of that summer and could not wait for July when the show was set to take place. My parents picked me up from camp and told me the show had been canceled. It was literally like someone had punched me in the gut. I had never been let down like that before by a band, my band.
    The summer went by and Pearl Jam announced a make up date in September with the Ramones opening, but it was during the school year and we were all too young to drive. Well I must have had some very loving parents because they offered to take me and my friends to Austin (3 hours away) on a Saturday to see the show. I remember watching the legendary Ramones in their black leather jackets in the 100 degree Texas heat. I remember Eddie in disguise coming on stage during their set, not fooling anyone. The sun was just about to set when Pearl Jam came on stage, opening with “Act of Love” and absolutely tearing through a 3 hour set. The only time they stopped was to make sure everyone in the pit wasn’t hurt. I still have the bootleg of this show and listen to it frequently. They played everything from “Sonic Reducer” to “Leaving Here” to “Talk About the Passion”. By the time they closed with “Indifference”, I knew who my favorite band would be for life. I was married to the music of Pearl Jam.
    That’s my little story. I’ve managed to see PJ 3 times total and many other shows in my life, but Pearl Jam in Austin (9-16-95) is my favorite show of all time and is absolutely the reason I’m the music fan I am today.

    Neil — March 3, 2009 @ 7:33 am

  • This is a tough call. But right now, the most magic PJ moment for me is on the Live at Benaroya Hall album where Ed turns the vocals on “Black” over to the audience and they sing, perfectly in tune, perfectly in sync. They don’t miss a note, a pause or an intonation. That single moment is 100% pure magic.

    Jason Baldwin — March 3, 2009 @ 7:36 am

  • First Show – April 1994 Patriot Center – (Pearl Jam was possibly not going to play this show because of Kurt Cobain’s death a few days before.) Favorite moment to this day is seeing only the silloette of the band members with the purple background light and hearing the moaning of Eddie as RELEASE starts the show. I always hope it is the opener of every show I attend. Side note, Corduroy was played for one of the first times.

    I am 34 and have been a fan since hearing TEN on a tape at a summer party between my Junior and Senior Years of High School. I was such a big fan in college that I bought Vs. on vinyl despite not having a record player because it came out a week before the CD. I went everyday to my college’s library to listen to it on the school’s record players with headphones. It was great. Then I bought the CD at Midnight the day before it came out the following week.

    Other Honorable mentions
    *3rd Row in St. John’s Newfoundland (I live in Philly)
    *Storytellers in NYC
    *Acoustic “Porch” unplugged…I was not there however.
    *Playing Pearl Jam tunes at bars when ever there is a diehard fan there. Here is a sample….

    Chris Lebresco — March 3, 2009 @ 7:56 am

  • “I’ll ride the wave where it takes me…” and/or “Run away my son. See it all. Oh see the world.” Two live songs I’ll never forget are “Low Light” sunset at the Gorge ’05 and “Betterman” singalong at Lolla ’07. Hair-raising moments!

    David Ting — March 3, 2009 @ 8:00 am

  • After the 30-40 shows I have attended, my favorite moment is still Release opening my first show at the Patriot Center in Virginia. It was the greatest.

    Now I love performing PJ songs out in bars and restaurants as a solo acoustic act. Porch is my favorite and it is great when there are some PJ fans around and they sing along. I always introduce the song like this….”This is my favorite song and why I play guitar… 1,2,3,4″!

    Here it is, hope you like it….

    Chris Lebresco — March 3, 2009 @ 8:11 am

  • My brother has always been a major influence on me growing up, especially when it comes to music. I remember him coming home and telling me he had something I should listen to. At the time, I was just excited my big brother wanted to hang out. He played the first song from the Ten album, and I was awestruck. Since then they have been with me through every milestone, like a security blanket I will never out grow. I love taking in their sound; it’s as though I am unlocking something in my head I once forgot, but don’t know quite what it is… some sort of indescribable emotion. Pearl Jam had grown into something of my own for me, but everytime I hear Once, I can’t help but feel how lucky I am to have my brother for a best friend. There has been some amazing concerts, but nothing like a big brother sharing his new music find with his little sister. That has to be my moment.

    Mandy — March 3, 2009 @ 8:16 am

  • My favorite PJ moment is from No Code’s “Habit”. The absolute fury of the music and ferocious screams by Eddie make this under appreciated song one of my favorites. I just absolutely love the moment and the lyric uttered in the middle of “Habit” when it appears as if the song is over. A moment of silence, followed by “Speaking as a child of the nineties” and then full throttle back into the awesomeness that is Habit. When lucky enough to hear this song live, they even give a little bit of an extended pause.

    Jeff Ash — March 3, 2009 @ 8:16 am

  • My favorite Pearl Jam moment was taking my friend Julie, who was a huge PJ’s fan but had never seen them live, to see them play the old Chicago Stadium in 1994. Among the highlights:

    * Singing “Happy Birthday” to Jeff as Eddie tried, and failed, to smash a birthday cake in his face
    * Eddie admonishing the crowd for booing opening act The Frogs (who were terrible)
    * Eddie smashing a hole in the stage with his mic stand
    * The Dead Boys’ “Sonic Reducer” during the encore

    Christian Ruzich — March 3, 2009 @ 8:24 am

  • When Singles came out in theaters, MTV had a live show with many of the bands in the movie. And Pearl Jam covered Baba O’Reily from the Who. And Eddie introduced the song by saying, “This song is for Cameron Crowe, cause he’s got good taste in music.” And they blasted out bad ass version of Baba O’Reily.

    Don’t know why I remember that quote so much…but it is definitely one of my favorite memories for sure.


    Zak Chamapgne — March 3, 2009 @ 8:38 am

  • #1: Vedder, Better Man, and the E Street Band:

    #2: “Mike McCready has something to say before we go”:

    jf — March 3, 2009 @ 8:40 am

  • My absolute favorite Pearl Jam, um, anecdote I guess would be the deepness (for lack of a better word) of Corduroy. It really goes well with a lot of my general state of mind for the last few years. “Can’t let you roam inside my head,” suggesting you can’t let someone control you’re emotions completely. “I’m already cut up and half dead…I’ll end up alone like I began…” “Everything has chains….absolutely nothing’s changed.” The imagery doesn’t get better in songwriting in general. It’s also amusing, when in live performances, they change it to “We’ll end up alone like we began.” There’s my 2 cents.

    J — March 3, 2009 @ 8:51 am

  • Favorite moment…the end of the East Coast leg of the 2000 tour, after Roskilde. September 5, 2000. PJ finish the tour oustide of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. They opened the show with scorching versions of Evenflow – Hail Hail – Animal – Corduroy and Grievance. Blew the roof off the place…played for 2.5 hours and after finishing the first encore with a soaring version of “Insignificance,” the band came out for one final song…

    And Ed comes on stage to finish a tour that almost never got off the ground and one that could have very well been the end for this band, considering all they’d been through that year….and then he utters a phrase that everyone in attendance that night was elated to hear…

    “You make it hard to quit.”

    And then…Baba!

    It was amazing.

    Gabe — March 3, 2009 @ 8:51 am

  • My favorite Pearl Jam moment on record is the last verse of Present Tense, when the acoustic guitar comes in and Ed sings “Seems that needlessly it’s getting harder to find an approach and way to live.” It’s mind-numbing and chill inducing. Ed sounds at his most vulnerable on any song and the music just smooths out to the Present Tense riff and the acoustic then runs off into an awesome jam to finish the song off. I love it.

    I have to throw in an honorable mention. “Black” in Pittsburgh 2000. The band absolutely nails it. By the end of the song Ed is on fire and Mike’s solo that follows is otherworldly. It’s my favorite live PJ moment and I could listen to that version on repeat. Seriously. It’s fantastic.

    Jonathan McVerry — March 3, 2009 @ 8:55 am

  • My favorite PJ moment is from the opening night of the 2000 North America Tour in Virginia Beach, VA – the first show since the Roskilde tragedy. As the end of Daughter meandered into another song, Ed spoke to the crowd:
    “The last time we had to ask the crowd to do something it was under completely different circumstances than this. So, it’s a little nervewracking to . . .
    It’d be nice to start, uh, anew.
    So, I was gonna ask you to do something and maybe you’ll do it?
    [crowd cheers]
    And it’s uh . . . singing.
    [crowd cheers wildly]
    Sing loud cuz it’s outside, sing loud cuz you’re st-. . . you’re still alive.
    Just sing loud, alright?”

    Eddie proceeded into “It’s OK,” and took the entire amphitheater to a higher emotional level. By the end of the song, I was left out of breath and driven to tears. As amazing as the live recording sounds, it was absolutely incredible to be there.

    Bonus momment: At the end of the show, Ed grabs the mic and says, “Thank you for everything, including what felt like love. Right back at you.”

    Adam — March 3, 2009 @ 8:57 am

  • For me, the best music has emotion pouring from the instruments as well as from the singer and no band does that like Pearl Jam. They have themes that pervade the majority of their music which also particularly resonate with me: perseverance, defiance, friendship, love, and something that isn’t necessarily stated outright but what I would call a hybrid of benevolence/altruism/patriotism. That being said here is a cliff notes of some of my influential Pearl Jam moments:

    1. Given to Fly: The perseverance that comes to a culmination in this song, especially by the phrase “well, fuckers He still stands!” has always been tremendous motivation for me to overcome any obstacle. The soaring end to this song just makes anything feel possible.

    “He floated back down ’cause he wanted to share
    His key to the locks on the chains he saw everywhere
    But first he was stripped and then he was stabbed
    By faceless men, well, fuckers
    He still stands

    And he still gives his love, he just gives it away
    The love he receives is the love that is saved
    And sometimes is seen a strange spot in the sky
    A human being that was given to fly”

    2. Lollapalooza Chicago ’07 – while this show was spectacular all in all after making it through ridiculous heat and massive crowds to get close to the stage, my most memorable moment of this night was when Eddie made up a song on the spot to protest BP/Amoco and their irresponsible dumping of waste into Lake Michigan. To this day I can’t go to a BP/Amoco station for gas (nearly getting me stranded a few times!) “Don’t Go BP/Amoco!!! Don’t Go”

    3. I have a three year-old daughter and I’m trying to get her into Pearl Jam. Bee Girl has been my first successful attempt (although I did get her to watch the MSG DVD last weekend too). I put this song on a CD of children’s tunes and she calls it her favorite (Daddy is so proud, especially with the 4 month-old boy next to her wearing his skull logo onesie!)

    You know time is long, and life is short.
    Begin to live while you still can.
    Believe in nothing, believe me,
    Those who can be trusted can change their mind.
    When the anxious is the present, unwrap your gifts, take your time.
    Everything you imagine needn’t be stuck in your mind.
    Bee Girl, be a girl.
    Bee Girl, be a girl.

    4. Last on my list will be a couple songs of friendship:

    Off He Goes – just an overlooked masterpiece in my mind that totally shows off Eddie’s voice and allows you to perfectly picture a conversation between two old friends:

    “And now I rub my eyes… for he has returned
    Seems my preconceptions are what should have been burned…

    For he still smiles… and he’s still strong
    Nothing’s changed, but the surrounding bullshit… that has grown

    And now he’s home… and we’re laughing…
    like we always did… my same old… same old friend

    Until a quarter-to-ten… I saw the strain creep in…
    He seems distracted and I know just what is gonna happen next

    Before his first step… he is off again”

    and… Faithfull – it wasn’t the song I danced to at my wedding but the final stanza always sums up the love for my wife:

    “And everything is you
    Me you, you me, it’s all related
    What’s a boy to do?
    Just be darling and I will be too
    Faithful to you”

    This could go on all day… Thanks for the contest Heather, I’ll be pumping Pearl Jam for the rest of the day!

    Matt Walters — March 3, 2009 @ 9:07 am

  • I love the live version of “Black” from Florida in 94(I believe). The tag at the end…”if you don’t come back, i’ll do it.” Really gave me some reality on the depth of his despair in that song. I think we’ve all been there. Well maybe not that deep…but you know what I mean.

    Will — March 3, 2009 @ 9:32 am

  • I remember the first time I heard “I Got ID” on the radio. It was the summer of 96 and my friends and I were playing basketball outside and someone had their car radio on. The DJ came on and said, “We got a new Pearl Jam song to play” I stopped what I was doing and sat in the car and listened to it. I was overjoyed with emotions, most likely because I had also just gotten tickets through the Ten Club to see them in NYC for the first time. Now every time that song comes on it takes me back to a simple time when I was just out of High School, hanging with my friends and gearing up to see my favorite band for the first time, which still is the best concert I’ve ever been to. 9/29/96 Randalls Island.

    Chad R Wade — March 3, 2009 @ 10:02 am

  • I particularly enjoyed the show I saw in Atlanta in 2000. They played a lot of my faves, Crazy Mary, Better Man and Immortality which Eddie flubbed pretty good. He was of course drinking from the wine jug and bashing the corporate entities. At one point I was in the box section at the new Phillips Arena and he told everyone up there that they sucked for not being down in front. That was pretty amusing. And I quietly made my way back down to the floor area after…

    Hogan — March 3, 2009 @ 10:14 am

  • madison sq garden, 1998, when the gang inserts “save it for later” into “betterman.” that was a brilliant moment.

    scott — March 3, 2009 @ 10:32 am

  • My favorite PJ moment was April 8th, 1994, at the Patriot Center in Fairfax, Virginia. I can’t imagine anyone here doesn’t know the significance of the date, but yes, it was the day we all found out that Kurt had killed himself.

    We didn’t have tickets, but my brother and I drove down from Baltimore, and just hung out outside the arena listening. The whole show is ingrained in my head, especially the rocking final encore of “Rockin’ in the Free World,” but I still find it hard to listen to indifference or footsteps without being affected.

    Daryn Nakhuda — March 3, 2009 @ 10:39 am

  • My favorite moment is from the live album 6-22-00: FILA Forum. During ‘Daughter’, Ed and the crowd exchange an extended back and forth call-and-response that is one of the best crowd interactions I’ve ever heard. It culminates with back and forth higher-pitched exchanges until Eddie runs out of higher pitches. A truly great PJ moment and a must-listen.

    Chris — March 3, 2009 @ 10:45 am

  • to qualify one particular pearl jam moment as my “favorite” would be impossible. so i’ll instead choose the farthest i ever went to see them– me and some friends drove from atlanta to new orleans to see pearl jam [and the ramones opening] play and it was incredible. i have a bootleg of the show and ridiculous fond memories. it was 1995 and i was 17.


    lee. — March 3, 2009 @ 10:59 am

  • 1998 in Camden, NJ (The “Philly” shows in the summer). Only candles on very tall stands lighting the stage, 30,000 people all standing and cheering, Release. This was the first “real” tour in many years and the first time anywhere near me in a very long time. I still remember just how, amazing, cool, etc… (hard to describe) hearing them live, hearing songs I know better then I know family members, being sung live. By my band. For some reason this band’s music makes everyone feel like they’re our own personal band. The feelings at the beginning of that show are wonderful memories that can only happen once. You only get one first time…with events in life and this was one that was just perfect and unforgettable for me.

    tb — March 3, 2009 @ 11:28 am

  • I have to say my favorite moment is from my first time seeing them live. It was Sept. 16 1996. I was a 14 year old freshman at Newberg High School in Oregon. I’d received my fan club tickets in the mail already and was eagerly awaiting their show at Key Arena in Seattle. I remember sitting in 4th period science class, barely able to contain myself. After that was lunch and my dad had taken off from work and came to pick me up from school. He actually took me out of class to go see a concert. Wow.
    We drove the 4 hours or so up to Seattle, then waited in the long long line leading into Key Arena. This was in their anti ticketmaster days, so it was a weird set up. Finally we got let in and since the whole place was General Admission, we made a break for it through the halls of Key Arena and found some good seats, lower 100 level, near the stage. We patiently sat through the Fastbacks(who I didn’t care for at the time, but later grew to like) and finally Pearl Jam came out. I so clearly remember the lights finally going down and my knees almost giving way underneath me. They started the show on a slow note by playing a gorgeous version of Long Road but really, I spent that whole first song trying not to pass out or collapse. That is the one and only time I’ve ever felt that way at a show. I’ve been moved to tears and given goose bumps, but never since have I had to fight hard to maintain consciousness.
    That is my favorite Pearl Jam moment. The D chord of Long Road echoing out of the darkness of the stage, nearly knocking me flat on my 14 year old back.

    Jackson — March 3, 2009 @ 11:33 am

  • I CRACKED THE CODE!!! Only took me an hour of precious work time, but now I’m enjoying streaming audio of some of PJ’s best live…mmmmmm..makes my day!

    Favorite moment had to be the 4/1/2003 Denver show (albiet at the Pepsi Center…argh). It kicked off the tour and was surrounded by controversy due to the start of the 2nd Iraq war. Favorite moment of the show was during Daughter when Eddie began chatting with the 17,000 fans following his every word chatting back. He then broke into L-O-V-E, L-O-V-E, L-O-V-E….

    It still gives me chills!

    Jim — March 3, 2009 @ 11:33 am

  • “Untitled” – its one of those great songs that often goes under the radar. One reason for its greatness is that Eddie changes the lyrics at almost every turn, so the song is constantly evolving. At the Irvine 2003 shows Eddie really went for it and at the end belted out “With you I will never be alone!” It became one of those live PJ tracks that my girlfriend and I would listen to over and over again. I went to “Vote For Change” in Boston the following year and Eddie did it similarly. I held my phone up, so my girlfriend could hear the song (she couldn’t make the Boston show as we live in LA). The song and those lyrics became so important to us that we chose that live version as our wedding song. It started the night, and in fitting Pearl Jam fashion, we finished our wedding like the end of a show – Live “Baba O’Riley” into “Ledbetter”.

    Matt — March 3, 2009 @ 11:39 am

  • how about the live acoustic version of “lukin” on the Imagine in Cornice DVD. The way they start out & before you know it they are rocking as fast and furious as i’ve ever seen hands move.

    kristen — March 3, 2009 @ 11:50 am

  • Seeing Pearl Jam at the Metro in Chicago and hearing State Of Love and Trust for the first time.

    larry — March 3, 2009 @ 12:01 pm

  • I was 16 and had just got my license and became a Ten Club Member – i bought tickets to Sacramento (6/22/95) and San Francisco (6/24/95). I experienced the greatest show ever – having never been to a concert before – to be outside at Cal Expo in 100 degree heat with my friends and new found freedom. We made it close and almost died during Bad Religion and then PJ came on with Release. It was mind blowing and I knew immediately that they were “my band”. I’ve been to 47 shows and have been in the first 5 rows for almost everything in the last 10 years but nothing will ever compare with that first night.

    Steven — March 3, 2009 @ 12:12 pm

  • Favorite Pearl Jam Moment: The chorus of “In Hiding” – Yield.

    Not only is it on my favorite PJ album, Yield, “In Hiding” is probably my favorite song of all time. Stone’s music and Eddie’s lyrics create an anthem about taking a “life fast.” Inspired by a quote Charles Bukowski gave in an interview with Sean Penn, the lyrics describe someone shutting themselves inside for a few days to “re-charge their batteries.” The slow build-up to the chorus sets up a euphoric moment when Eddie finally exclaims, “I’m in Hiiiiiiiding!!!” The chorus is so joyful and free, I feel like this song would not have been out of place on the Into The Wild Soundtrack! Brendan O’Brien captures a polished and pure moment that I believe to be Pearl Jam at its best!

    Adam — March 3, 2009 @ 12:32 pm

  • Dear Heather,

    Thanks for making it down this far in the list!

    Whenever I need a reason to smile or feel good about this world (and Pearl Jam’s place in it) I put on PJ’s DVD Touring Band 2000 and watch my favorite Pearl Jam moment which occurs in three parts during their eighth song, Given to Fly, in St. Louis.

    First Eddie announces, “There’s something really interesting happening here on the side of the stage, if this has happened before we’ve never seen it. There’s someone signing every word that we say or sing. And it’s much more interesting to watch than any of us, excluding, maybe, Matt Cameron.” And with that, he walks over to the side of the stage and asks the woman, whom he introduces as Kim, to join them which she does.

    Second: Eddie’s right. As the song begins, Kim’s not only interesting to watch, she’s fascinating. Signing and dancing with all of the passion this song evokes, she translates not only the words but, in movement, the music as well which amazes me every time I view her.

    Third: As the song ends, Eddie walks over to Kim and dances with her. It’s a tender moment that sums up his, and my, appreciation for what we all just saw.

    Thank you for sharing.

    Paul, NYC

    Paul Gordon — March 3, 2009 @ 12:39 pm

  • Cracked the puzzle (entire puzzle, not just a single song) in 30 minutes. What a brilliant marketing piece! Fun, too!

    Chris — March 3, 2009 @ 12:59 pm

  • hard to choose, so hard. but, soldier field ’95, they played a few days after the dead. magical. anyway during the show the crowd spontaneously starts to chant “ticketmaster sucks” which eddie starts to do right along with them and goes into a rant about the corporate giant they had spent the past years fighting.

    perfect harmony of the fans and the band being on the same page. beautiful moment.

    Eric — March 3, 2009 @ 1:00 pm

  • This may not be the most glamorous answer, but my answer is being at Lollapalooza in 1992 and damn near the entire crowd miming “arms raised in a V” during Jeremy…
    it was incredibly powerful (and gives me goosebumps right now remembering it.)

    jrich — March 3, 2009 @ 1:03 pm

  • Definitely seeing them two nights in a row at Seattle’s Showbox on the Riot Act tour. Classic stuff.

    Seamus — March 3, 2009 @ 1:09 pm

  • It would have to watching PJ at Memorial Stadium (96 or 97 I think) in Seattle, and Eddie 30 feet above the stage on the scaffolding singing his heart out to “Alive”. Goosebumps.

    Jevan — March 3, 2009 @ 1:13 pm

  • One of the many moments that pop out at me is the Memphis show in 2000 when they played the fast version of Elvis’ Can’t Help Falling In Love. Ed said he “needs a jacket for this next song, something nice” He was brought out a sport coat. Song started slowly with just Ed and then the band kicked in and rocked out. Took barely over 2 minutes, but it is etched in my brain forever…

    jstock — March 3, 2009 @ 1:13 pm

  • “I don’t want to stay-eeeeeeaaaaeeh”

    Yellow Ledbetter baby!

    Separate from a song, my favorite moment is going on spring break with my family to the outer banks of North Carolina in…1993? 1994? It was post-vs. and pre-Vitalogy, anyway. I randomly tune to a radio station and discover that they are broadcasting a live pj performance in its entirety. This was just gold back in the day before the Interwebs and to stumble across it in such a lucky fashion was too much. I happened to have blank tapes with me and I spent the night out on the Porch to get the best reception as I taped the whole thing. It was the first time I heard Better Man and it got me so fired up for the next album. Some months later, I found the show in the local record store as a bootleg import, but that didn’t take away from the magic of that night.

    Jeremy — March 3, 2009 @ 1:16 pm

  • I love when the second guitar kicks in on “Go” – one of my all-time favorite side 1, track 1 songs.

    Mike — March 3, 2009 @ 1:34 pm

  • Question for fans.

    Some of the Ten tracks were remastered on the Greatest Hits CD. Are these the same (less overproduced) remastered editions or a third version?

    Tyroc — March 3, 2009 @ 1:54 pm

  • !998. The first leg of this particular tour.Missoula, Montana. So many memories stick out.PJ hitting the stage with”Corduroy”. The waiting drove me mad! During “Alive”,the house lights on, 50,000 people singing in unison , with me in the middle of the action.Eddie inviting a couple on stage so the guy can propose marriage.
    Good times, indeed.

    Mark — March 3, 2009 @ 1:55 pm

  • Finally got to go to my first concert of theirs this summer at MSG. There were lots of highlights, but I think Better Man had to be my favorite. Between Eddie screwing up the lyrics at the beginning while everyone else had it right, some pretty amazing crowd participation with the entire arena full of people singing along, and the energy of the song at the end with the band just jamming out and having a good time, it was just a great moment.

    TC — March 3, 2009 @ 2:22 pm

  • The best moment took place when I was able to see them at MSG on my birthday last year. It was absolutely perfect timing and a great show. The moment that stood out on that perfect evening in NYC was when they broke out “Garden”. I shrieked like a little kid on Christmas because that is my favorite song off of Ten (well, other than “Even Flow”) and I’ve been hoping to hear it since I saw my first show back in ’00. I took their performance of “Garden” as a birthday present from the guys, even if they don’t know who I am.

    Kevin G. — March 3, 2009 @ 2:33 pm

  • Either in November on my birthday, at the Civic Theater in San Diego, 1993 or a few days later at the Polo Fields in Indio. In San Diego, I bought one scalped ticket in the 3rd row on the right side in front of a stack of speakers. Vs. had just been released and it felt like a small show. I still think back and it makes me remember why I go see live music. At Indio, where there was a massive crowd, I remember the start of the show, where I was physically lifted up by the surge of people pushing towards the stage and carried a good 20-30 feet before stopping. Very different experiences but I love them both.

    Pat Gallagher — March 3, 2009 @ 2:40 pm

  • Favorite moment I’ve seen live: the opening notes of Release being played in 1993 at my first concert.

    Favorite moment on record: the crowd singing “I know someday you’ll have a beautiful life…” on the Benaroya cd.

    Ryan — March 3, 2009 @ 2:49 pm

  • It’d be tremendously easy to pick some obscure moment for me – Pearl Jam’s most assuredly that kind of band, the kind that rewards each obsessive fan with their own moment. Live shows and time spent hunched over freshly unwrapped CDs have certainly not let me down in that respect.

    However, my favorite Pearl Jam moment actually comes smack dab in the middle of the studio version of a massive hit single for the band. The song is “Better Man,” and the moment comes in Eddie Vedder’s reading – right after the song picks up speed – of the words, “the world to come along.” Eddie’s voice breaks, in a way that I’ve never heard in a PJ song before or since, and it just kills me, every single time – it’s an endorsement of vulnerability that speaks volumes.

    It’s probably not cool for this to be my moment, but the good news is this – I get to relive it every single time I hear that song, on the radio or over my iPod’s earbuds. That’s pretty cool.

    dunford — March 3, 2009 @ 2:59 pm

  • Well when I think of Pearl Jam, I think of the music. My favorite moment would have to be the 2006 tour when Eddie would flip his guitar backwards and let the light reflect off into the crowd while the band kept jamming away. Just gives me chills thinking about.

    lowlight419 — March 3, 2009 @ 3:07 pm

  • Hey Heather… I have many favorite PJ moments so I’ll pick the one that always comes to mind first.

    The scene was at the Boston Garden April 10, 1994 and was at the end of the second leg of Vs. tour. At this show the band first played Immortality, in all its glory, live. What’s importsnt to note is this was five days after Kurt Cobain took his own life and needless to say the band and the crowd was in a somewhat somber but passionate mood.

    The song was amazing! It had so much meaning on so many levels for me… Not only was I hearing a new PJ tune but the lyrics were so relevant and meaningful. After Vitalogy was released I could not wait to hear this new song. After listening I noticed that the lyrics were completely different from what I heard in Boston. Come to find out Ed sang a version that has only been performed once and some say was a dedication to Kurt. Not confirmed by Ed but interesting nonetheless… Here’s a snippet of the chorus:

    I can’t take a walk
    I won’t fight this world
    I won’t save it all
    It is not my fault

    Take me as is
    I don’t need this
    I die just to live
    I won’t stay long
    I’ll be long gone
    I die just to live…

    Kind of hard to deny the Kurt references based on the recent events and the lyrics. Here’s a youtube vid of the song that I found (can’t tell you how pumped I was to find this gem out there):

    Pretty cool moment… Take care!!!

    Bill — March 3, 2009 @ 3:57 pm

  • My favorite Pearl Jam moment is watching Eddie run around the stage, slamming the tamborine and just jumping around and having fun every night. So much energy. I also love the version of yellow ledbetter with him and Mike from the tibetan freedom concert. and the unplugged show they did was great, so glad that is included in this release.

    kevin — March 3, 2009 @ 4:15 pm

  • I think my two favorite Pearl Jam songs are “Angel” and “Drifting.” If I had to be specific (and I think I do!) I would have to say the lines in “Drifting,”

    …I feel like going back there, but never for long
    I sometimes wonder if they know that I’m gone…

    It makes me think of Chris McCandless, pulling me into some state of wanderlust.

    Nick — March 3, 2009 @ 4:24 pm

  • Seeing the 3rd Mansfield show in 2003. The acoustic set was amazing. To this day it is one of my favorite shows of all time. Hartford ’08 is up there too.

    Ryan — March 3, 2009 @ 4:27 pm

  • My favorite PJ moment was my first live PJ show, of course.

    But another favorite PJ-thing I have is my ‘favorite PJ note on guitar’. And you will find it at 1:58-1:59 in Strangest Tribe: it’s like a raindrpo splashing on your face. That is how it sounds/feel. That one note. Always strikes a chord in me. Check it out, you’ll see what I mean.

    Ps: Strangest Tribe is highly underestimated.


    stefan — March 3, 2009 @ 4:28 pm

  • I love when Eddie gets are angry and garbled and RAR! so pretty much of all “Do the Evolution”, but I especially love the hallelujahs. If he goes all falsetto and wobbly with them it totally makes the concert for me!

    One of my favorite live moments was the Charlotte, NC show (Aug 4, 2000) where he starts singing “Take me back to…North Carolina” and it’s just heartbreaking, maybe more so after I moved away. I have the live album and it just breaks my heart every time.

    I also love on the Live at the Gorge CD where he starts ripping on Tom Petty who I guess was playing the next night and Pearl Jam was too loud and keeping him up. Then he sings a Tom Petty song, Free Falling maybe? I’m getting old and can’t remember, and it’s just so awesome!

    God I love this band!

    mollysusie — March 3, 2009 @ 4:33 pm

  • There are SO many favorite PJ moments but I will go with the most recent (and the shortest story). Instead of choosing The Wiggles, BNL’s “Snacktime” or TMBJ’s “Here Come the 1,2,3′s” which are in heavy rotation in the car, the other day my 4 year old daughter said, “Daddy, I want to rock out. Can we listen to Pearl Jam?”

    Never in my wildest dreams back in 1991 did I imagine I would have a daughter who would ask to listen to my favorite band of all time!

    cj — March 3, 2009 @ 4:42 pm

  • ah…. so many memories… i can still remember going into kmart in 8th grade to buy TEN on cassette (after seeing the video for alive on mtv), then a few months later back to the same kmart to buy the cd when we first got a cd player.
    but i digress… there are so many memories related to pearl jam that i truly treasure – they have been the ever-present soundtrack to my life from 8th grade until today… and will most likely continue to be my soundtrack.
    i would have to say that the one that has stayed with me the most comes from the first time i saw pearl jam in concert in april 1994 in rochester, ny at the war memorial. the highlight of this sweaty, high-energy show was eddie introducing ‘go’ by saying “this one’s for kurt”. it made me wonder what was wrong with kurt, and why eddie would care (you see, mtv said they were feuding) within a few days, kurt cobain was found dead in his house… which, upon listening back a week later on a bootleg tape, really touched me – my adolescent mind was wrapped up in not understanding how my two favorite musicians could be feuding – but ‘please dont go out on me now’ was sung for kurt. it cemented my love of eddie, and pearl jam. it made me realize that this was a REAL man. a SENSITIVE man, not afraid to show it.
    i have not left them ever since. and won’t.

    todd stahl — March 3, 2009 @ 6:12 pm

  • Great to read all the moments from so many awesome fans! It’s so hard to choose just one favourite moment, as I love them all!

    However, I can’t go past my first ‘Mike point’. It happened at the second Adelaide show on Nov 22, 2006. My husband and I were rocking out all night in the 5th row, and during ‘Severed Hand’ Mike pointed at me. I turned to my husband and said ‘Mike just pointed at me’ and of course my husband said ‘no he pointed at me!’ We looked back at Mike and he was laughing at us, then he flicked us one of his guitar picks. Such an awesome night (as all PJ concerts are)!

    Kari H — March 3, 2009 @ 6:24 pm

  • Favorite moment in one word — Borgata.

    szg — March 3, 2009 @ 8:43 pm

  • The first chords of ‘Long Road’ on the Katowice (Krakow) live bootleg never fails to give me chills. Just a little more than 10 years after the fall of the Iron Curtain, many in the audience knew what a long road was like. Pearl Jam rarely falls short on passion, and this audience didn’t lack it, either.

    David Peterson — March 3, 2009 @ 8:49 pm

  • My favorite Pearl Jam story/moment, is during their battle with Ticketmaster when I DIDN’T get to see them.

    For a year they tried to play venues that didn’t use Ticketmaster as a seller. My sister and I were Ten Club members and we wanted to go to see them.

    We managed to get tickets to Wolf Mountain Ampitheater in Salt Lak City Utah and we live in Long Island, NY!

    We flew to Utah, to an outdoor stadium. As we were making it up the mountain to the outdoor stadium, it started to absolutely pour rain and hail on us! It was miserable weather.

    We finally make it to the stadium to discover we have 2nd row seats! This is in 1995 when PJ was at their apex.

    We were beyond pumped…and than it happened.

    The boys came on stage and announced they couldn’t play beacuse their equipment was caught in the hail and rain storm because no one expected that to happen! The storm happened a mere 30 minutes before show time, when the stage was set and their equipment was ruined.

    My sister and I (we are 21 and 18 at the time) had to hitch back to our hotel absolutely crushed by this.

    We flew home the next day with only a t-shirt (which i still have) and one of the strangest concert moments I have ever been involved with.

    I would do it all over again for a chance to see them in the 2nd row.

    Paul — March 3, 2009 @ 9:17 pm

  • Reading through the other comments has brought back soooo many memories. From the first time hearing them play Alive on the radio, to the famous Atlanta concert that was broadcast live and turned into the multiple Dissident singles, scrambling to get my hands on any single or live cd I could find, skipping class and heading to the music store the moment it opened to pick up Vs….it goes on and on.

    My favorite Pearl Jam moment goes back to my youth and the early days of the band and their well known MTV Unplugged performance.

    I lived in Florida back then and the attacks on the abortion clinics were all the news. I remember not fully understanding the situation, the sides being taken, or why doctors and nurses were being targeted with acid and bombs. I remember PJ taking a hard stance and their concerts supporting the doctor who was attacked.

    I worked at a day camp back then and had recorded Unplugged the night before, being unable to watch it. I brought the tape in with me the next day and as myself and the other counselors ate lunch in our meeting room, we watched the performance for the first time.

    I was a big fan of Porch from the first time I heard it. The way the song just goes straight to the aggressive lyrics with barely any warning and then builds into a fury after about 30 seconds. The intensity of the drum build-up at the end of the guitar solo. And most of all the line, “Hear my name, take a good look, this could be the day.” There’s always been some debate as to this being a love/break-up song or an anti-abortion song, but that line for me was always 100% hope. I always felt like he was asking what was wrong with this world and why we’re so complacent, but then saying…look at me. I’m going to be the change.

    As we sat in the room and watched Eddie climb atop a wobbly stool, writing down his arm, guitar and drums building…I was moved to some emotion I’d never known prior. This was unchecked passion, raw emotion. The message on his arm and his improvised lyrics hit home and suddenly the world was bigger than me. And at the same time, here was a man who was so intense in his words and singing, I thought he was going to explode.

    I’ve only seen a handful of artists since that have put so much of themselves and their emotion into their singing. At that moment the band opened my eyes to a whole new level of music. And as cliche as it may be, they gave me the courage to bear my soul and be the change that I want to see in this world.

    How many artists are able to entertain us while giving us an outlet to be better citizens of the world? I thank them for helping make me who I am today.

    Scott P. — March 3, 2009 @ 9:33 pm

  • my favorite moment will always be the first time I ever heard Black – which was my first PJ song. I was at Hilton Head, SC and my friend put the headphones on me and said listen to this – you’ll love it. we were outside on the balcony and you could hear the waves and feel the wind on your face and then the song started up and I was just in heaven. that was so many years ago and I still can smell the ocean when I hear that song.

    Lindsay — March 3, 2009 @ 9:54 pm

  • Luckily I was at the right age to catch Ten when it was released, otherwise I safely say my life would be very different. For me there are so many moments like this but one that comes to mind and always sends shivers up my spine is when the beat really kicks in on Inside Job (from the last album). They also started their last Dublin show with this, the band jamming for the first 3/4 minutes until Vedder walks out, bottle in hand, and grabs the mic.

    One of the only bands left (with the exception of maybe Wilco) of surprising us all repeatedly adn long may it continue.

    Keep up the great work Heather!

    Pete Clarke — March 4, 2009 @ 2:11 am

  • For my favorite Pearl Jam moment, you have to rewind to early 1993 and picture an awkward 12-year-old boy obsessed with his Genesis “We Can’t Dance” and Eric Clapton “Unplugged” cassettes. I thought those albums were the coolest and then, one day, my older cousin gave me a copy of “Ten” that she had dubbed on her little cassette recorder. From that first moment, at 46 seconds into “Once,” where Eddie Vedder’s wild-man growl tears into “Iiiiiiiiiiiiiii admit it,” I was blown away. Suddenly, there was this whole new world of music that didn’t revolve around my parents turntable; I was hooked (and still am). Without a doubt, Pearl Jam (and my cousin, Becky) made me the music fan that I am today.

    Oh, and that Clapton album still totally rules!

    Matt Graupman — March 4, 2009 @ 3:08 am

  • Sadly, I guess I’m one of the few people left that hasn’t seen Pearl Jam live. This fall for sure– I would love to see them do Outside Lands.
    Like a couple of others, my favorite moment is in Rearviewmirror. I just remember being stuck in a horrible marriage, knowing I needed to make a change, and not seeing a way out. Then I’m listening to one of the Manchester CDs, singing along at the end, and I knew exactly what to do.
    Same moment as David, actually. Unoriginal but true.

    Jim — March 4, 2009 @ 5:54 am

  • I bought the version of Porch from the Bridge School concert on itunes (which I can’t seem to find on the itunes store anymore, maybe they stopped selling it). I love the original version of Porch from Ten, but the acoustic arrangement turns it into a whole different song. While it’s so hard to think of my favorite moment (there are so many!), one of my favorites comes from the above mentioned version of Porch. I just love the way Ed sings, “Can’t be what you want because I’m…SUPPOSED to be just fine.” I love the emotion you can hear and feel in his voice with that line. Brilliant.

    Selena — March 4, 2009 @ 6:49 am

  • My favourite moment is in Black from Live at the Benaroya Hall. The bit where Ed gets the crowd to do “I know someday you’ll have a beautiful life…” etc. I get all tingley every time I hear it because the crowd sings SO loud, and it’s just an amazing crowd singing moment :)

    Caz — March 4, 2009 @ 7:35 am

  • If there were a single moment of Pearl Jam I had to choose, it would be the first eight seconds of “Even Flow.” Just listen to this first riff over and over, you’ll see what I’m talking about.

    Cook — March 4, 2009 @ 7:53 am

  • Hmmm. Favorite moment. Fantastic question.

    Three spring to mind immediately, so I won’t spend any more time pondering it & just go with my gut:

    1. On VS, near the end of LEASH, when Vedder’s voice kinda cracks as he screams, “DELIGHT!!! DELIGHT in our YOUTH!!!” I take it as his way of saying, Yeah, it’s all fucked up but, goddamit, we’re YOUNG. Let’s live a little. Or a lot.

    2. On TEN, the very beginning of RELEASE, when Vedder says so almost-inaudibly you can only really hear it with headphones cranked up to 11: “Father…” Gives me chills. Every time.

    3. On YIELD, LOW LIGHT, starting at 2:40 through the end. So hopeful it makes me nearly tear up. I smile and thrash around joyously instead.

    Falzone — March 4, 2009 @ 9:23 am

  • I’ll never forget coming home from a party one night, I was underage and drunk. Afraid that I might get busted as I saw my house lights were still on–I tried to rectify myself and look sober as possible. I opened the door ready to explain myself when I realized that my father was in the living room, stereo on blast. Vedder is loud, “I’ll swallow my breath and go deep I was diving, I was diiiiiving.” My dad runs up to me (apparently I wasn’t the only one enjoying a few drinks that night) saying, “Dan–I love this song…I couldn’t figure out what he was sayiong so I downloaded the lyrics off the internet (I’ll admit that was surprising in its own right).”
    We stayed up a little longer enjoying Yield. From then on In Hiding was my Dad’s favorie PJ song for life, and that is a memory I’ll never forget…

    Dan Thompson — March 4, 2009 @ 9:26 am

  • My fave moment took place the first time I saw PJ. Aragon Ballroom – Chicago 1991. They opened for the Smashing Pumpkins and the Red Hot Chilipeppers. The came out on stage and opened the set w/ Release. What was so amazing was Eddie came out and said, “I used to dream about playing the Ballroom but in my dream there were no chairs.”
    Back then they had folding chairs on the floor. By the end of the song, the crowd had taken the chairs and passed them to the back of the room – creating a giant pile of chairs. By the time the 2nd song kicked in, “Even Flow” would turn the entire floor into a ‘pit’. After the show Eddie was up in the balcony watch the pumpkins. I went over to him and said hello, shook his hand, and asked if would sign my t-shirt? It’s the shirt where the band are cartoon characters. He signed his name, to Kenny Aragon survivor ’91. And, then he wrote on his animated character’s arm…one word…Fugazi.

    Kenny — March 4, 2009 @ 9:28 am

  • My favorite moment is from a show at Champaign, IL in 2003. During “Untitled,” one of my favorite tunes, Ed adlibbed about Chicago, my temporary hometown at the time – eliciting a huge reaction from the crowd, and one of many goosbump moments I’ve experienced at a PJ show.

    Aaron — March 4, 2009 @ 10:36 am

  • Best Pearl Jam moment ever….the Do the Evolution music video that still gives me nightmares. When that jet pilot removes his mask and reveals a laughing skull…….creepy.

    Logan — March 4, 2009 @ 11:16 am

  • I was living in Minneapolis and working at a local record store which sold tickets to First Avenue. In the summer of 1991 we got a two song promo cd single from an unknown band called Pearl Jam. After putting it on the stereo, I was blown away by “Alive” and freaked out over the Beatles cover of “I’ve Got A Feeling.” I still have this single to this day.

    There was a local three band showcase at First Avenue with Trip Shakespeare as the headliner. Opening acts were John Eller & The DT’s and Walt Mink. In the late afternoon I would run the tickets, that we didn’t sell prior to the show, back to First Avenue. While I was there, I was informed that this band called Pearl Jam from Seattle would be an unannounced band on the bill. They were driving back to Seattle from playing the Cabaret Metro 8th Anniversary show the night before. They were to go on when the doors opened at 6pm.

    The doors were about to be opened to the public, I decided to stick around and see a band that I only knew from the two song promo.

    A few of the employees and I were all there was on the floor of the club. Who shows up at a club when the doors open? Answer, not many. A few people trickled in during their brief set. It only took a song or two before a lot of the employees who were in various places in the building to make their way to the floor area. After a couple of songs on the stage, Eddie jumped down to the floor and was singing to each of us who were there. I can remember about a twenty or so people on the floor and more than half of them worked at the club.

    We were all into it their energetic set as if they were playing in front of a ten thousand people. Stone even jumped down to the floor and finished the set in the crowd with Eddie. By the time their quick 30 minute set was done, we were all blown away and wanted more. After this, I wanted the album to be out and still had to wait another two months.

    Fast forward to November of 1991 and Pearl Jam’s Ten is now out and has been one of best selling albums of the year for the record store I worked at. In the mainstream world it was starting to bubble thanks to being on the tour with the Red Hot Chili Peppers and Smashing Pumpkins. This triple bill was coming to St. Paul’s, Roy Wilkins Arena. I didn’t have a car at the time, but my girlfriend did. She gave me the keys and both of us drove from Minneapolis over to downtown St. Paul. She was a huge Red Hot Chili Peppers fan, but I was there for my new obsession, Pearl Jam.

    During the show I met up with one of the reps for the band and got some backstage passes which I was going to surprise my girlfriend after the show was over. Roy Wilkins is a basketball style arena and when bands played there, they would put a big curtain behind the band to block off back part of the arena. This part behind the curtain was the place where all the gear was left pre or post performance. The best part of this area, catering.

    After the Red Hot Chili Peppers had finished, I surprised her with the passes. She nearly fainted as she was about to meet her obsession, Flea. As she was hanging out in the group around him, I noticed Stone at a table by himself. I went over and started talking to him about basketball and the Mookie Blaylock connection with the band. Jeff Ament, Eddie Vedder and various crew members also started to sit down at the table. The half an hour or so conversation went from basketball to baseball to the show at First Avenue earlier that summer.

    With all three bands gear loaded and the buses ready to head to the hotel, I started to look for my girlfriend. She was no where in site. All the buses had left and not a sign of her anywhere. I wandered around the outside of the building until my fingers and toes couldn’t take the cold anymore and headed to her car. Thankfully I still had the keys. She wasn’t there. I went to her place. Her roommate told me she caught a ride home and that she’ll talk to me in the morning. I went home, still driving her car. For the next few days I would call and leave a message on the apartments answering machine. Never got a call back. This went on for about a week.

    I think may have been December 7th when her roommate called me and asked if she could come and pick up the car. I asked what happened to her. She told me that my, now ex-girlfriend, was too embarrassed at what she did that night and couldn’t face me. I never saw her or her car again. I did put on about thousand miles on the car during the week I had it. It was nice not having to wait for the bus in the cold for a change.

    It is now March of 1992 and Ten has become a huge seller all over the place. The band comes back to First Avenue as the headliner to a sold out show. First Avenue was pretty much my home away from home during the late 80′s and early 90′s. I was worked my way close to the stage during the opening acts but to the side as I’m very familiar with the moss pits that erupt in the venue during a show. The show started with “Wash” and a small mosh pit started. When the song morphed into “Once” and the recognizable guitar riffs kicked in, the whole floor turned into one giant mosh pit. A kid right next to me went up to surf the crowd and his foot connected with the side of my head, knocking my glasses to the ground. Never saw them again. I made my way to the bar. Told my friend who was working behind the bar about what just happened out there in the 1300+ sea of humanity. I don’t remember paying for any of the drinks the rest of the night. After the show was over, I was waiting for one of the employees to drive me home, I wandered around trash strewn floor squinting for anything that resembled my glasses. Beer bottles and cups everywhere. The club was empty except for the employees cleaning up and the crew tearing down. The band was out on the floor having some drinks before hitting the road to Madison, Wisconsin. When I returned to the bar, Mike McCready came up to me and told me he heard about my glasses. He pulled out a pick, signed it and told me it won’t make up for the loss, but might be a nice conversation piece when I think back about the night I had my glasses kicked off my face.

    I’ve had the opportunity to see the band many times over the last 18 years but nothing compares the roller coaster ride of the first three shows with my 2nd favorite band of all time. If you’re wondering they are a close second to the Beatles.

    Paul — March 4, 2009 @ 1:47 pm

  • Tough to narrow it down to one moment as there are about a million but if I had to I’d go with the Beacon Theatre show in NYC last summer (08′). A good friend of mine in NYC was fortunate enough to get us tickets through a guy at his work that was on the Robin Hood Foundation board which the show was a benefit for. The show was fantastic and our seats were perfect. We were in the center in the upper balcony but the sound and energy were great. So after the show we grabbed a free 10club CD they handed out and decided to wait and see if we could meet the band. So we joined the crowd of about 40 people outside doing the same thing and were about to give up when all of a sudden the band walked out, with heavy security around them, and walked into a sidedoor of the bar across the street. We weren’t going to be able to go in the side door so we walked right to the front. We came to the front only to find a list which we were both not on. But my buddy, God bless his clever imagination, told the girl holding the list that his name was [insert mans name] which turned out to the the guys name who was on the board that gave him the tickets!!! I can only imagine if this guy knew my buddy used his name. But then I needed a name and my buddy said i was [insert wife's name of guy on board] How this worked I have no idea considering I am a male but it did. They crossed 2 names off the list and let us in. We are inside of a private Pearl Jam party at this point but pearl Jam is no where to be found. So we run to the bathroom downstairs and find a private room next to the bathroom. This room had another list and inside we could see Pearl Jam!! We tried for a good 40 min to try and get inside of the private room within the private party but we didnt have any luck. Apparently you had to donate $10k to get on that list. But as my friend is in the bathroom and I’m waiting upstairs for him I see Eddie Vedder walk up the stairs and out the front door! Now I cant just leave our stuff and our table because my friends is in the bathroom so I’m frantically texting him telling him to hurry up b/c Eddie just walked out. Not more than 30 sec go by and my buddy walks upstairs. We run outside just as the rest of the band walks out a side door and into a car. Its at this point that I realized I was in it for the long haul. I grabbed my buddy and we hopped in a cab and told the cabby to follow the escalade. Neither of us could believe what we were doing. I wasnt ashamed to be a stalker. It was Pearl Jam! Ten was one of my favorite albums of all time. I had no choice but to get in that car and follow them. The cab took us to the Mandarin Oriental hotel in NYC and we hopped out and ran across the street just in time to meet Stone and Mike who were stopped by a handful of people who already knew this was the band’s hotel. Eddie’s car went somewhere else and we heard later that Jeff and Matt came home earlier. I got my Ten CD that was given to me at Beacon signed by Mike and Stone. I got a picture with Stone and one of Mike and I was in heaven. But I still wanted to meet Eddie. Greedy, I Know. Keep in mind, I had to be back in philly at work in the morning and it was like 1am already. So I waited outside the hotel with a few other die hards til my train at 6am but Eddie never showed. My time to meet Eddie came last summer in Chicago but I’ll never forget the night at the Beacon. A great show with a great friend watching a great band. And I couldnt have asked for a better encore. Meeting Mike and STone and waiting up til the 6am train back to Philly with no luck of meeting Eddie. What a ride. and probably my fav PJ moment.

    Eric — March 4, 2009 @ 1:48 pm

  • Hershey Pa. on the riot act tour after a slow opener, may have been love boat captain but i cant remember, they go into last exit and eddie yells “f**k this f**kin chocolate factory “and then tears into the song. Nothing life altering but something that always brings a smile to my face whenever i think of it

    Derek — March 4, 2009 @ 2:10 pm

  • “Last Exit” – 2:11 to 2:20
    In the language of concussions; brute, clobbering wallops of energy, Dave Abbruzzese actually articulates what it FEELS like to be IN THIS song. He bookends Eddie’s final “Let the ocean dissolve way my past” like a man about to pop, like infinity brimming over, bulldozing his way into the breakdown without stopping to pick up the mess. Most rewarding air-drumming ever.

    Andy — March 4, 2009 @ 2:15 pm

  • my favorite pearl jam moment in a song is the little spoken interjection by eddie right before the solo in ‘yellow ledbetter’

    Darren — March 4, 2009 @ 2:28 pm

  • So, I have this sort of Pearl Jam soul mate who I met in London in the fall of 2007 – Pearl Jam was the foundation for what now is a truly great friendship and its one that just enhances my adoration for PJ. After London, I visited him in Chicago w/ tickets in hand to Lollapalooza 2007, and I knew the weekend would be legendary….and of course, as those of you who were there know, it was. We didn’t make it into the Vic show, but we definitely tried and nearly were arrested doing so. The take-away from that weekend wasn’t the late nights and pursuit of everything PJ, but an innocuous purchase of the red Lolla Pearl Jam shirt (w/ “PJ” crest on front); little did I know how significant the shirt would be for me. When I got back from the trip, I found out that my wife was pregnant with our first baby. I always say that any time I see PJ shows, something amazing happens in my life. During the 00 shows, I got engaged around those shows. After the 03 MSG shows, I was married the next month. The list goes on. So, my greatest Pearl Jam memory was the day my daughter Lila was born. By no coincidence or mistake, I made sure I was wearing my red Pearl Jam tee shirt that day and I vowed that night to take her to as many PJ shows as I could. She turns 1 this month and if this fall tour happens, guess who will be there with ear covers on? God, I love this band.

    Dan S. — March 4, 2009 @ 3:05 pm

  • The last two minutes of Breath.
    Wish I could see it live some day.

    JK — March 4, 2009 @ 3:22 pm

  • And when I was talking about Porch above, I actually meant Corduroy. I am a dork…it was early and my brain wasn’t functioning yet…so to repeat, with corrections:

    I love the original version of CORDUROY from Ten, but the acoustic arrangement turns it into a whole different song. While it’s so hard to think of my favorite moment (there are so many!), one of my favorites comes from the above mentioned version of CORDUROY. I just love the way Ed sings, “Can’t be what you want because I’m…SUPPOSED to be just fine.” I love the emotion you can hear and feel in his voice with that line. Brilliant.

    Selena — March 4, 2009 @ 3:36 pm

  • My favorite Pearl Jam moment was the release of Riot Act. I am still amazed by that album. Hearing it for the first time took me back to the day after my nineteenth birthday when I bought Ten on cassette with my birthday money. I couldn’t believe how good Ten was and listened to it over and over for days. Riot Act was the SAME EXACT experience over a decade later. It cemented PJ as my favorite band beyond any shadow of a doubt!

    Jffry Wolfe — March 4, 2009 @ 3:45 pm

  • eddie vedder’s speech as he’s about to give dewey cox a lifetime achievement award in ‘walk hard’ pure class!

    although pretty much any of the xmas singles are worth mentioning….particularly history never repeats from 1995!!!!!!!

    greg thomas — March 4, 2009 @ 3:58 pm

  • ohhhh, this all makes me so happy.

    browneheather — March 4, 2009 @ 5:43 pm

  • jeremy video

    conor — March 4, 2009 @ 6:20 pm

  • “Don’t drive me, I’m a SUV” at the Pepsi Center 2003 and watching all the Ford Truckmen getting upset.

    Seriously though, “It’s OK” whenever Stone goes into a different chord progression. Goosebumps.

    The Knew — March 4, 2009 @ 6:21 pm

  • I can remember when I first discovered “alternative” music in 8th grade. I was skimming the radio and came across this voice that I could hardly understand. Underneath it was a deep, dark mass of music. I was entranced. I listened and then it hit: “I know someday you’ll have a beautiful life, I know you’ll be a star…” From that moment on, I was hooked.

    In a less pretentious memory, my college friends and I used to get very hammered and sing “Elderly Woman…” at the top of our lungs on a regular basis. Just awesome.

    Nathan — March 4, 2009 @ 8:45 pm

  • Seeing Pearl Jam as a teenager for the first time at Summerfest in Milwaukee, we got tickets in the very last row of the reserved seats. The light show during Evenflow was pretty spectacular I remember turning around slowly to take it all in and seeing a barrage of Miller cups flying down from the lawn seats. A full cup bounced of the heads of the couple in front of us who had been making out since Bad Religion took the stage, they paused for a second to figure out what hit them then dove right back into making out. I can’t hear Evenflow without thinking back on that.

    Brendan — March 4, 2009 @ 9:06 pm

  • well, shit. i sat here thinking for a moment, flipping through moments like polaroids in a photo album, and stopped here:

    solider field, chicago, july 1995. one of the hottest days of the summer. i was 14, the summer after eighth grade. it was, as you know, a long show filled with too many memorable and amazing moments to count. but the one that stays with me is “immortality.” it was full dark by then and heat lightning flashed over the lake. during mike’s solo i stopped squinting at the stage and looked up. watched the sky light up over the water in crazy pyrotechnics. the sound coming off the stage was channeled electricity. drums rushing in at the end like thunder. somehow leaving my head entirely.

    trapdoor in the sun.

    andrea — March 4, 2009 @ 10:44 pm

  • My wife and I met Eddie Vedder in the bleachers at Wrigley Field and spent an entire game sitting w/ him while no one around us realized who he was. Chris Chelios came by in the 4th or 5th inning to visit Eddie and the guys sitting in front of us were calling all their friends saying, “you won’t believe who’s sitting next to me right now…Chris Chelios!” They had no idea Eddie was there (Boom was there w/ his wife as well). It was a very memorable afternoon that I’ll remember forever. After the game Ed gave us a shirt he’d worn a few nights earlier at a show in Hartford (2006 tour). He thanked us for not blowing his cover as we’d recognized him before the game even started, but he was able to be annonymous for an entire afternoon and I think he really appreciated that.

    Dave — March 4, 2009 @ 10:56 pm

  • I remember watching Jeremy every moring on MTV while eating my coco puffs before school. I thought it was the best song ever written.

    Steven Dupree — March 5, 2009 @ 7:31 am

  • For me it is the song “Nothing As It Seems.” When my wife and I were trying to have our first child, it took us five years and as many miscarriages. During this time, I listened to this song everyday. It connected the struggle of or situation with the hope and love my wife and I had. “Saving up a sunny day. something maybe two tone.”

    We now have two amazing little rockers.

    Stephen Kimball — March 5, 2009 @ 8:04 am

  • Pearl Jam at Red Rocks on June 20, 1995. Enough said. The greatest show that I have ever seen. The best band in the world. The best venue in the world. The best night. The best weather. The wind in Eddie’s hair while he leaned over the edge of the stage, screaming “I’m still alive”. The most goosebumps that I have ever had. Incredible.

    Jennifer Kennedy — March 5, 2009 @ 9:21 am

  • 1. Playing “Alive” while doing 90 in my not so bottom heavy Montero, bombing down I-70 after bursting into the sunlight that screams for you to get out of eisenhower tunnel and onto the mountain, any mountain. Always followed by T.P.’s “Running Down A Dream.” Always. Must have done that a 100 times or more back when. Good times.
    2. The making of bootlegs official. I haven’t, to my knowledge, actually heard one, but I respect the fact that their doing it.
    3. That Eddie Vedder. He walks sooo hard. So hard.

    garrett — March 5, 2009 @ 9:55 am

  • They’re. it’s early.

    garrett — March 5, 2009 @ 9:59 am

  • While my official answer for contest purposes will be the 2-night stand at MSG 2003 [in its entirety; the single greatest rock memory i have], there were 2 awesome moments forever cemented in my mind from the respective nights:
    night 1: after ben harper leaves the stage following his help on Daughter, and Ed talks passes the bottle around to Stone and Jeff, when jeff hit that first bass note of Crown of Thorns – i felt like i was the first person in that whole place to know what song it was and i lost…my…mind! It was an insane moment in a night full of insane moments.
    Night 2: “Alive” – when the lights punctuated each Yeah! and fistpump from every single soul in the Garden. That was nice. Man, what an awesome show. Thanks for the memories!

    ev — March 5, 2009 @ 11:43 am

  • My favorite Pearl-Jam-moment-in-a-song is in “I Got ID,” right after the first guitar solo, as the band goes back into the verse and Eddie whispers “those easy shells seem so easy to crack.” His voice cracks a little bit, and you can genuinely hear pain.

    I’ve heard the song a hundred thousand times, easy, and it still gives me chills. Actually, that whole song gives me chills…

    As for my favorite personal Pearl-Jam-in-the-world moment, it was in high school, when I stayed up ’til one AM recording the Monkeywrench Radio broadcast. I was a wreck the next day in class, but it was completely worth it.

    Years later, when I was in art school, I met a girl from my hometown who had stayed up doing the exact same thing, and I realized that there were fans all over the world who had listened to (and probably recorded) the same broadcast at the same moment I had been. It blew me away.

    A unifying moment for people all over the world, brought to you by Pearl Jam. Pretty neat.

    And thanks for this contest, Heather. Your blog is also pretty neat, and it’s a lot of fun to read other people’s Big Pearl Jam Moments. =)

    Sterling — March 5, 2009 @ 3:20 pm

  • Here are two moments out of a million — both from the “Touring Band 2000″ DVD: (1) The woman in St. Louis dancing and signing for the deaf members in the audience during “Given To Fly” is absolutely mindblowing and (2) “Daughter/It’s Okay” from Jones Beach. “It’s Okay” moves me, exhilarates me, like nothing they’ve ever done every single time I hear it.

    Johnny — March 5, 2009 @ 9:06 pm

  • I have so many fave moments when it comes to Pearl Jam but I can boil it down to these.

    1. Being a young marine (long ago) and getting my “Alive” stickman tattoo and enjoying how much I would be taking the piss out of death when I rocked it in the casket.

    2. Naming my cat eddie after the one and only Mr. Vedder

    3. The way the hair on my neck still stands up when I hear the “we belong together” add-on lyric from the MTV Unplugged version of Black.

    4. Being able to pick myself out as one of the people cheering when the music drops out at about 1:57 into insignifigance from the 2000 detroit michigan show.

    5. The way that pearl jam was always a starting point when meeting new people especially in the corps..I would often hear the words..”I didn’t know black guys listened to pearl jam”. I would gush about how they saved my life.. but I think I would lose people when I told them about the Poison (the band) period..”I won’t forget you” was a killer

    Lastly I forgave Scott Weiland (he knows what he did)..”where you runnin to tommorrow” indeed.

    Curtis Reeves — March 5, 2009 @ 10:01 pm

  • I have had my share of great live experiences (Montreal 2000, Fargo 2003, Vancouver 2005 & The Gorge 2006), but I still have to go back to my very first listen to Ten to expound why any of those moments can mean anything to me now. As any teenager, I thought there was no-one who understood all of my (in hind-sight, irrelevant, mostly make-believe and adolescent) pain and frustration. The opening score of Master/Slave before Once spoke to me like nothing else had. From that first swell and the strained plead in EV’s voice buried in the mix, I became inseparable from my yellow Sony Walkman and that cassette. It was more than a security blanket, and although it’s become cliché to say this about anything, I’m sure it saved my life. I listened and re-listened to Ten until the tape was destroyed. I had to re-purchase that cassette 3 times before my first (but not last) Ten CD, and at 30 years old, I still own every copy, plus other random, used and unopened copies I find wherever I go.
    But that’s every Pearl Jam fan.
    OK, thanks for listening. I’m going back to Craigslist to see if I can afford any City and Colour tickets yet.

    Andrew Morton — March 6, 2009 @ 9:52 am

  • I don’t think I can pin it down to a single moment, but when I was in college me and my three best friends road tripped to Knoxville for a PJ show and it is one of my best memories. Ed commented on the “Patriot” sign my friend was holding up and apologized saying that he couldn’t do the song because he hadn’t played it in so long. They also played Hard to Imagine that night and it has been one of my favorites ever since.

    Dee — March 6, 2009 @ 10:06 am

  • “I miss you already…”

    5/25/06 – Boston – The show was winding down and then Eddie invited a young girl on stage and accepted her gift of flowers. In return, he offered to sing her request — Smile. During the song, Eddie carefully tossed her his harmonica.

    I’m not sure why this moment stuck in my head. Perhaps because she was young and cute, because it was an unusual request or because I wished I could go on stage and get a kiss & hug from Eddie too. And it was my first PJ show. When I read the forum & blogs after the show, other people mentioned this moment and fleshed out the story a bit more from their perspectives. The young girl was sitting in the first few rows with her (very cool) dad and held a sign with a smiley face to ask for her request. And she apparently rocked out in her seat and sang her heart out on all the songs she knew. Her dad even posted about this experience in a lead up to a Mansfield show in 2008.

    I loved looking around at the crowd that night and seeing everyone young and old — smiling, animated, dancing, singing along with Eddie at the top of our lungs. And catching the look on someone’s face when they recognized the opening chords of a special, favorite song that they’ve been hoping to hear. The special song I got to hear that night was a great version of Black but the song I’ll remember the most was Smile :)

    P.S. It’s my birthday today and since I can’t go to a PJ show anytime soon, the Ten reissue would be a wonderful present.

    Robin — March 6, 2009 @ 10:52 am

  • “It’s an art to live with pain
    Mix the light into gray
    Lost nine friends we’ll never know
    Two years ago today
    And if our lives became too long
    Would it add to our regret?”

    I think is the most honest thing we’ve ever heard from this band- not saying they are in the habit of dishonesty- and instantly hooked me into “Love Boat Captain” the first time I heard it. Just a beautiful, touching, heartbreaking verse.

    Brett — March 6, 2009 @ 1:50 pm

  • Without a doubt my best pearl jam song moment came the first time I heard and saw Evenflow on MTV. I was getting ready to go to elementary school, had MTV playing on the small TV in my bedroom and the song came on. I still vividly remember stopping what I was doing and staring at the TV until the video finished. All day long the song ran through my head with visions of Eddie climbing on the rafters and dropping into the audience. I saved my lunch money for the next two weeks in order to go out and buy Ten on cassette, the first album I had ever purchased. I still have the tape and the worn out album art that came with it. If I look around my parent’s house enough, I’m sure I’ll still find the VCR tape with the Evenflow video on it.

    Eric — March 6, 2009 @ 2:47 pm

  • Aiiight…

    Heather, quick props for the blog. Love reading yer stuff. Thanks for sharing. Found you from a link to one of your PJ posts.

    It’s been fun sifting through all of the PJ moments so here’s what I’ve whittled it down to (for now):

    Official submittal would have to be the 3/26/94 show in Murfreesboro, TN. It was Spring Break and my buddy, who’d bought tix thru the classifieds, and I drove up to see the gang play. Our tix were turned out to be in a section that that MTSU had allocated to the teachers. These teachers were a tame bunch that had the misfortune of two adrenalized, long-hairs joining their ranks. Anyhoo, it was a poignant and memorable moment when they brought Steve Cropper on stage and played ‘Dock of the Bay.’ My pops had played Otis Redding in the house growing up and it was special to have them surprisingly cover this song and inadvertantly link my Dad to my favorite band. During the song, in a very human moment, Eddie stumbled thru the whistling part and towards the end motioned for the crowd to join in. Shortly thereafter the band, all sporting grins, brought the song to its conclusion and I was left with an indelible memory. Their music was super relevant in my life then and remains even moreso today. Can’t wait for the new album and tour!

    “And he still gives his love, just gives it away. The love he receives is the love that is saved.”

    David Brush — March 6, 2009 @ 3:22 pm

  • I remember it well, April 3rd 1994 in was Easter and I was working at restaurant named Tom Foolery’s in Westborough, Ma. I titled this event in my life the night I fell in love with PJ. Up until them I had owned Ten and VS. but never thought of PJ to be any greater than any other band that emerged around that time. However, that night I couldn’t pull myself away from the radio carrying it around the kitchen everywhere I went. Luckily my roommate, unbeknownst to me, was taping the show back at home (on a cassette tape). From the opening ambience music that was played until the final note of Indifference I was memorized. The way they took studio songs and transformed them in live stories, added tags, and played unknown covers, and unreleased songs. It would take me almost 18 months to finally figure out all the song titles (pre Internet days). I don’t have those cassettes anymore after the 1,000th play (not kidding) they finally broke. Of course, now we have the convenience of just going to the Internet and find someone who posted the show and downloading it. It adds convenience but removes the magic behind the music. I remember getting my first PJ Xmas single and driving all over town trying to find someone who owned a record player. Now I can download the single before I even get my single in the mail. PJ had always been able to deliver magic even in a world where there seems to be none. Thanks for your blog it’s great. Ironically I found you blog a couple of years ago searching for PJ Xmas singles.

    Thanks JT

    JT — March 6, 2009 @ 6:14 pm

  • My favorite Pearl Jam song would have to be Daughter. Only for the fact of the little dots in between the lyrics that were written out in the booklet. The little dots separating the sentences…phrases…I wrote them…over and over…when I was a teenager…listening to this record…over and over in my room…rewriting the lyrics…and poring over the lyric sheets…i had them memorized…true.

    Deron — March 6, 2009 @ 9:29 pm

  • My favorite moment would have to be drinking from Eddie’s wine bottle during the “take a bottle drink it down pass it around” part in Crazy Mary, in San Bernardino on October 28, 2000. I know not written by them but still coolest moment ever.

    BTW… Great work on you blog. One of the few I always check back with.

    Dylan McLemore — March 7, 2009 @ 8:02 am

  • My favorite Pearl Jam moment was recently actually. A little more than a month ago I think it was, I went on Pearl Jam’s myspace page to see what was going on. I saw that they had some remixes from the reissue. I had already heard them, so I ignored them. I then saw “Brother” and momentarily became angry. I was annoyed that the band would be releasing ANOTHER version of Brother. I think it’s a great song… but it’s instrumental. I love Ed. Ed must be in the music for me. Regardless, I decided to click and see if anything had changed. I heard basically the same intro and sighed. I opened a new tab in my browser and started to go about being upset… but then… I hear Ed… he came in strong and powerfully. I said “Holy SHIT!”. I then went all over the net trying to find a download of this fantastic track (I would have just downloaded the myspace one, but it’s edited or something so that you hear a click in the middle of the song). No one seemed to have this version. Finally, I decided, “Hey, I’ve got 60 gigs of Pearl Jam, maybe I already have it in my library”. I searched “Brother” in itunes, and up came 5 versions, 3 instrumental, 1 live, and 1 studio with vocals!!!! It was on a rarities disc that you (Heather) gave me about 2 years ago. This made my day and I proceeded to tell all my friends the great news.

    Thomas — March 7, 2009 @ 9:35 am

  • My favorite Pearl Jam moment, for me, would come compliments of the Album “Yield,” but more specifically, the song “Given To Fly.” I have been such a fan of Pearl Jam since their beginnings, but this song and this album solidified them as one of my favorite bands of all time. The song “Given To Fly” reminds me of warm and cold currents sweeping across one’s body as they lay below the vast sky. There is one line, specifically, that is my favorite line in any Pearl Jam song. “But first he was stripped, and then he was stabbed by faceless men, well, fuckers, he still stands.” This is such a powerful and inspiring line I often recall when it feels the world is against me. Such an amazing band, such an amazing song.

    Jason — March 7, 2009 @ 11:04 am

  • There is just something magical about the word, fuck. I love the word used in Vedder’s lyrics, but my favorite is when he gets pissed on stage during this instance.

    “Hey, listen asshole! One more fucker throws a fuckin’ quarter out here, and we’re out of here. I’m telling ya. Fucker. What the fuck? You’re blowing it for fucking everybody. Hit me with a fuckin’ quarter again, and fuck it. I’m out of here. We’re all out of here. Fuck you. And if anyone sees someone throwing fucking change right next to ‘em, you have my permission to personally beat the holly fucking shit out of ‘em. Thank you very much. Fucking idiot.
    …ahh, that felt good. Thank you.”

    C Jensen — March 7, 2009 @ 12:11 pm

  • My favorite Pearl Jam moment has got to be the performance of “Porch” (intermingled with Sonic Youth’s “Androgynous Mind”) that the boys did at the Fox Theater in Atlanta in April 1994 … Show was broadcast over the radio, and of course, as an obsessive PJ nerd, I taped it off the air. Eventually, most of the set was released on CD as a 3-disc “Dissident” single box … That version of “Porch” still raises goosebumps on my arms every time I listen. From McCready’s “Voodoo Chile” licks that open the guitar solo to the AWESOME extended guitar interplay between Stone and Mike, the middle section of the song is just blistering. Eddie’s Sonic Youth vocal quips are powerful, but it feels like my heart’s been ripped out of my chest when he strays from those lyrics and goes off on his own, screaming out “I feel love / I give my blood / I give my flesh / I give it all to you,” as Stone’s guitar whirls around like a tornado and McCready’s lead notes stab like daggers through the soul …

    Geez, I just gave myself chills just typing about it. Damn.

    Gary B. — March 7, 2009 @ 2:48 pm

  • I’m gonna have to go with the transition in I Got ID where the tense bridge (I got memories, I got shit) melts into the sorrowful chorus.

    J-Ro — March 7, 2009 @ 8:44 pm

  • First of all, it is a beautiful thing to read the nearly 150 comments to this post.

    Here are some memorable moments for me:

    5. “I know you’ll be the star in somebody else’s sky/but why/whyyy/can’t it be mine. . .we, we belong, we belong together/together. . .” from the MTV Unplugged performance of Black. Captured all of the angst of a breakup that had to happen but that is also tearing your heart in two.

    4. Rocking in the Free World from Pinkpop 1992. A young band + Neil Young song about a “kindler gentler policeman’s hand” and 12 years of Reagan-Bush + the slow build-up at the beginning + the undulating crowd in the mist ( = breaks your heart.

    3. It’s Okay at Jones Beach 2000 and captured on Touring Band. It was a moment of solidarity between the band and audience. I write about what it meant to me here:

    2. February 3, 1998, release of Yield. An immense billboard next to the freeway leading to the Bay Bridge in SF announced the release, a yield sign set against the backdrop of a road into the mountains ( I bought it at a midnight sale at the Tower Records. Followed the band up the coast to Seattle later that year. It was one of those periods of time that holds deep meaning and feels formative: alone on the road in my Honda listening to Faithful, Wishlist, Low Light, Evolution, In Hiding.

    1. Better Man, Seattle, November 6, 2000. At 3:45 Ed shouts “I don’t want to leave/it’s hard to leave/I want to believe you. . .” and ends the coda with “. . .here I come/I’m coming home. . .it takes more strength/I know/I know/I gotta goooo-ohh. . . .” Nothingman follows. It’s short, I wasn’t there, and it doesn’t have personal resonance, but it makes me really feel something for the man.

    Special mention: Hawai’i ’78, discovered on I am Fuel and a moment best described by you, as the audience figures out what Ed is singing. Then found Brother Izzy’s version at a flea market at Aloha Stadium when I traveled to the islands. It’s a song of the land, a lament.

    lbc — March 8, 2009 @ 12:50 am

  • My favorite moment was in the song “Animal”, particularly the performance of it at the MTV Music Awards back in 1993. I was one of the many people who swarmed on top of Ten, but I also felt that I was among the people who was hearing something that millions of others weren’t hearing. I remember thinking that there was something very different in Pearl Jam, and it prompted me to seek out every B-side and bootlegged concert that I could. But I still wondered about that second album. I still wondered whether all of these newly discovered bands were as good as I thought they were. What would come after Facelift and Badmotorfinger.
    I watched the music awards with bated breath. I had spread the word to all my friends that Peal Jam would be performing that night, and that it would be a song off their new album. I was hoping that it would not sound like Ten, but that it would sound like the Pearl Jam that I had grown to love so much. I wanted viscera.
    When I heard the opening chords of “Animal”, a new song off a new album, I was at once enthralled. I realized then that I was enjoying a band who, as long as I wanted things that were honest and loud, would provide the soundtrack to many of my life’s moments for many years to come. Neil Young performing later on with them that night was the icing on the cake.

    Eric Penka — March 8, 2009 @ 7:42 am

  • Easy peasy.
    track: Dirty Frank
    line” “Where’s Mike McCready? BY GOD HE’s BEEN ATE!”

    Cracks me up every time, plus such a great song.

    mike — March 8, 2009 @ 9:38 am

    ..why would I make this up?

    The first Pearl Jam concert I went to was in Indio, CA, my home.
    (Now home of the Coachella Music Fest…at the time NOBODY played here!)

    As the band rocked and the beers flowed, I moved towards the stage. Just 10ft away and we’re packed like sardines, involuntarily swaying to the rhythmic beats, yet, as fragile as the Little Pig’s house of sticks. Suddenly, our house ‘blew down’ –
    a girl buckled, under the immense pressure of the collective.

    As I laid on top of said girl, 3 others on top of me, it became silent and everything slowed way down. I couldn’t breathe, and though my mind was screaming ‘GET OFF OF ME’..not a word left my lips. Finally, my arm was yanked, as I was pulled from the pile..
    up, off that poor girl
    up, into the fresh air, that refilled my lungs..
    up, to hear Eddie’s voice break the silence with this lyric..

    Oh, I, oh, I’m still ALIVE
    Hey, I, oh, I’m still ALIVE…

    ..I stood off to the side, shook my head and laughed.

    Eric A — March 8, 2009 @ 11:05 pm

  • when mike had to run off stage to use the can before opening for the Rolling Stones. because it reminds me of myself.

    JumpinCat — March 11, 2009 @ 8:39 am

  • so many great entries, guys. i had SO MUCH FUN reading these. the winner is jrich! congrats dude.

    browneheather — March 11, 2009 @ 9:26 am

  • Hello Heather!

    Im writing you for the second time i think…

    Because i felt that it was my time to share, after i enjoyed yours for so long ago, and well, the prize helps too (despite the fact that i think it already ended…)!

    I have 2 huge moments.

    (Warning! This may be as long as boring, so another readers that Heather beware!)

    Lets begin with the second one:

    Back since High School (VS era) me and my best friend in the world always wondered how great could it be being on a Pearl Jam show, and it seemed quite impossible, since we were from Peru, south america. It was like just something to dream about, like a wish you could have only if we found Aladdin’s lamp. And that show MUST END with Indifference, such a powerful song. That was the perfect song for nearly any kind of ending. And it would be my life’s soundtrack final song too.

    But well, lots of years after (more than 10) he moved from Peru to US (New Jersey), where he lives now.

    Last year i decided to visit him, and we managed to put the trip dates in order to get to go to a Pearl Jam show.

    And we snatch a couple of tickets to the Garden first nite show, and it was a great show, and guess wich was the last song?


    So, it was a real dream come true, a very old one.

    The second one was the first, one that broke my heart:

    Around 2005 i broke up with my girlfriend, after nearly 6 years, it was bad and painful, but not tragic, i thought it was just a “break” not like the real end, did not saw it coming. But it was an endless downfall from there.

    Like 3 month later i found out she was engaged, so quick…, and so painful, you cant imagine how i fell, that nite, i understood the meaning of “Broken Hearted.”

    Try to got her back in so many ways, and failed.

    By that time i knew Pearl Jam was about to come to South America for teh fist time, and made all i could to go to the show in Argentina. Sold lots of stuff and memories i never thought i could get rid of, but well.

    I made it, made the trip, went to the show, the place was on a street that had her exactly last name, “Espinosa”, wicj is mega rare, because Espinosa is always written with a Z, not an S, what are the odds?

    Like some very bad energy was trying to know me down, but hell, i was about to see Pearl Jam, the best band in the world.

    The show was great first time seeing them, the crow rocked too, and suddenly, Black.

    “I know someday you’ll have a beautiful life
    I know you’ll be a sun
    In somebody else’s sky
    But why, Why can’t it be”

    Tears rolled down.

    How a guy i’ve never meet, can describe my own feelings in such a perfect song?

    Emepitri — March 11, 2009 @ 10:56 am

  • My favorite Pearl Jam moment was sitting 5th row at the 1992 MTV Video Music Awards and seeing them perform Jeremy. I was a UCLA student and we were given the best seats in the place. I also liked finding out later that they wanted to play Sonic Reducer and MTV wouldn’t let them. Made me like them more.

    Jason — March 11, 2009 @ 10:24 pm

  • My favorite moment was at the 2005 Gorge show where Ed forgot the first verse or so of Off he Goes and at the end says that he always thought that song was too long anyway… and besides they wanted to play Low Light to match the sunset…

    Cheech — March 12, 2009 @ 12:48 pm

  • Hey guys, I did indeed pick a random winner for this one — THANK YOU for all the amazing and heartfelt entries.

    browneheather — April 19, 2009 @ 8:19 am

  • I savor, cause I found exactly what I was having a look for. You’ve ended my 4 day long hunt! God Bless you man. Have a great day. Bye

    perła — October 26, 2011 @ 4:01 am

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Bio Pic Name: Heather Browne
Location: Colorado, originally by way of California
Giving context to the torrent since 2005.

"I love the relationship that anyone has with music: because there's something in us that is beyond the reach of words, something that eludes and defies our best attempts to spit it out. It's the best part of us, probably, the richest and strangest part..."
—Nick Hornby, Songbook
"Music has always been a matter of energy to me, a question of Fuel. Sentimental people call it Inspiration, but what they really mean is Fuel."
—Hunter S. Thompson

Mp3s are for sampling purposes, kinda like when they give you the cheese cube at Costco, knowing that you'll often go home with having bought the whole 7 lb. spiced Brie log. They are left up for a limited time. If you LIKE the music, go and support these artists, buy their schwag, go to their concerts, purchase their CDs/records and tell all your friends. Rock on.

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