Ed Vedder: Some Unique Guest Appearances

by Kathy Davis on June 8, 2009

 Since singing with The Doors at their Rock & Roll Hall of Fame Induction in 1993, Ed Vedder has a long, rich history of solo guest appearances.  Many of Ed’s collaborations and sans-PJ performances have been well-documented , and as a fan and collector I like to support who he supports, so I try to keep up with what’s out there.   Yeah, I know, even if it’s just one song or a couple of minutes of film…it’s hard to say no  when it’s Ed,  since our boy never disappoints.

 That said, here are a few slightly more uncommon instances of Ed Ved on his own!

Ed surfs with a Beach Boy

Ed surfs with a Beach Boy

 

Brian Wilson On Tour:  First up is a DVD released in 2003, “Brian Wilson On Tour”The former Beach Boy is captured during his first ever solo tour which took place in 1999-2000. Our boy Ed appears singing backup vocals on “Surfin’ USA” along with Roger Daltrey, Sheryl Crow, Neil Young and Emmylou Harris. The footage for this was filmed in Mt. View, California at the Bridge School Benefit on Halloween weekend in 1999.

 

 

 

Don't Be Shy

Don't Be Shy

Slacker Uprising:  Next up, a film from activist/upstart Michael Moore entitled Slacker Uprising”  Originally released in November 2008 for free via Mr. Moore’s website, the film documents his efforts to register voters for the 2004 Presidential election, appealing to the “slacker” demographic .  A nice companion to Pearl Jam’s Vote For Change tour, the film features Ed making a surprise appearance at a Moore-organized rally in Seattle on October 20, 2004. One of the three songs Ed performed to  open the event was Cat Stevens’  ”Don’t Be Shy”; here’s a nice clip from the distributor Brave New Films You Tube channel:

 

evsolothepartysoverThe Party’s Over:  Though released in 2005, this one slipped under my personal Ed radar: Philip Seymour Hoffman’s “The Party’s Over: An Uncensored Journey Into Democracy In America.”  The documentary features Hoffman as a “concerned citizen” travelling the U.S. during the 2000 Presidential election, attending political conventions and rallies, and includes behind-the-scenes footage of many events. Where does Ed figure in? He’s captured in a clip  from the Green Party rally at Madison Square Garden, October 13, 2000.  Here is a snippet of “Times They Are A Changin’” and a backstage interview (which starts about 1:20 in):

 

evsolopancakemtPancake Mountain Episode 11:  Now that Ed’s a Dad twice over, it seemed only a matter of time until he put in an appearance in a kid-related program – and they don’t come any cooler than Pancake Mountain!  It’s a wacky Washington D.C. cable-access show, featuring  silly sheep Rufus Leaking and has become a bit of a cult favorite among cool parents.  Our boy Ed  is certainly that, though we suspect that he may have become involved via his pal Ian MacKaye of Fugazi, who helped Pancake Mountain creator Scott Stuckey get the show off the ground back in 2005.  Ed is in Episode 11 doing a song called “Make A Difference”, written especially for the show. Here he performs with Rufus and some kids, courtesy the Pancake Mountain YouTube channel.  Everyone’s clad in EV T-shirts, and this was filmed at the 9:30 Club in D.C. around the time of Ed’s solo tour on or about August 16, 2008. If you want your own copy of the DVD, go here and get the one for Episodes 11/12.

 

SURF’s UP:  It’s no secret that where there be tasty waves, there may be Ed.  A couple of  fabulous surf videos involve the man; first up is one certainly not much under the radar since it contained a previously unreleased song. The Jack Johnson-produced 2004 film A Brokedown Melody includes solo uke track “Goodbye” in a well-placed segment on the DVD; the song is also on the CD soundtrack.   (We all know that former pro surfer Johnson is a longtime Ed pal). 

Lucky Country, lucky us!

Lucky Country, lucky us!

 A bit more uncommon is a fine example of the best surfers in pursuit of the most unique waves, an award winning surf DVD The 5th Symphony Document.  Released in 2001, it features Ed, pal Kelly Slater and others in New Zealand, both in the water – we get to see Ed on a longboard - and around the campfire.  The two along with Red Whyte perform a song entitled “Lucky Country” in the most beautiful setting ( the song is also featured on the out-of-print soundtrack CD if you can find it!).

 

 

 

EV, cinematographer

EV, cinematographer

Gabba Gabba, Hey:  You’re reading this, so you’re likely a PJ hardcore - that’s how  we know you already have all of The Ramones DVD’s to which Ed contributed. In case you forgot they were in your collection, look for “The Ramones-We’re Outta Here!” (their final concert on film – Ed sings on the very last song “Any Way You Want It”); “Too Tough To Die-A Tribute To Johnny Ramone” (Ed is seen singing “I Believe In Miracles” at a tribute concert filmed Sept. 12, 2004 and also speaking at Johnny’s memorial service) - and surely you have Ramones doc End Of The Century, just because Ed contributed some Super 8 footage he filmed. Wasn’t it great to see Ed’s perspective from the inside of the van with the band as they traveled through South America and experienced the Beatles-like fan hysteria?  In case the DVDs are buried underneath your complete set of official 2000 PJ bootlegs, you can get them all again at the Official Ramones Store here.

 

it IS the hardest part

it IS the hardest part

 

Hellooooooo Tom:  Oh yeah, and surely nestled in the PJ bookcase  there somewhere is the DVD of  “Runnin’ Down A Dream”, the 2007 Peter Bogdonavich documentary about Tom Petty & The Heartbreakers, right? We know that you ran to the video store when the thing came out so you could watch that interview with Ed and the bonus footage of him joining the band for “The Waiting” in Denver on July 3, 2006. 

Rock!

Kathy Davis ( Twitter: @CrookedArm23 )
A Bay-Area based entrepreneur, co-editor Kathy conceives and writes her share of TFT’s articles and sections. She was co-editor/co-founder of one of the first Pearl Jam fanzines "Footsteps" (1992-1997). Kathy’s first Pearl Jam show was at the Bridge School Benefit on November 1, 1992.

Leave a Comment