People Like To Talk About Pearl Jam

by Kathy Davis on June 28, 2009

People will talk, and we like it especially when the talk is about Pearl Jam!  In our hunt for interesting Pearl Jam tidbits, we come across many notable quotes about our band.  Here’s a fun little collection of the latest PJ mentions that have come our way. 

First up, here’s a wee mention of the boys from Joe Elliott of Def Leppard.  He was interviewed in Rolling Stone about DefLep teaming up with fellow 80′s heydey bands Poison & Cheap Trick for a tour this summer.

“I think us, Poison, and Cheap Trick is pretty much an event,” Elliott says. “Up until 2005, we were really struggling to find opening acts that wanted to tour with Def Leppard,” he admits. “It was sort of that post-grunge hangover or whatever, and all of a sudden, the Journeys and the Foreigners and people were banging on our door. We’ve had a real mixture of ’70s and ’80s bands out with us. There are no ’90s bands around, other than Pearl Jam, and they don’t need to tour with us. So, where are you going to go? Everybody was telling us that teaming up with other bands from the ’80s was going to put bums in seats, as they say, and we’ve been embracing this for five straight summers now. It’s been fantastic, and I think this year’s going to be up there with any that we’ve done so far.”

Telekinesis is the pseudonym for Seattle musician Michael Benjamin Lerner. (Six degrees of separation from PJ = His 2009 debut album was produced by Chris Walla, guitarist of Death Cab For Cutie, who opened for Pearl Jam on the Vote For Change tour in 2004). Michael spoke glowingly of our boys in this interview with a nice blog called Music Induced Euphoria.

You come from Seattle, a place with a history of great musicians. Are there any particular names, famous or unknown, that you’d like to share as particularly poignant?

Pearl Jam is one of those bands that continue to amaze me. They’ve braved the grunge scene, and are still continuing to make records that are amazing, and challenging. I’m in love with that band.

Seattle Rap/Rock pioneer Sir-Mix-A-Lot, perhaps best known for his 1992 hit “Baby Got Back”, recently spoke to and guest-edited excellent rock publication Magnet Magazine about his career.  I felt compelled to print the mag’s informative intro about Mr. Mix-A-Lot – he seems supah cool, and loves our boys.

Sir Mix-A-Lot—a.k.a. Seattle-based rapper/producer Anthony Ray—may forever be linked to 1992 mega-hit “Baby Got Back,” but you’d be off-base in labeling him a one-hit wonder. One of hip hop’s ultimate DIY practitioners, Ray was a platinum-selling artist (his 1988 album, Swass, and its definitive single, “Posse On Broadway”) long before “Baby Got Back” introduced suburbanites everywhere to the glories of the big, bad booty. He founded his own record label (Nastymix), promoted his music himself while producing his own tracks, created a Seattle hip-hop scene from scratch (giving birth to a generation of latter-day artists such as Blue Scholars, Oldominion and Common Market) and was among the first hip-hop acts to deliberately collaborate in the rock genre (working with fellow Seattleites Mudhoney, Metal Church and Presidents Of The United States Of America). These days, Ray is working on a new album due out next year and generally surveying a scene hugely influenced by the music he created two decades ago. Sir Mix will be guest editing all this week.

You were pursuing your career during the heyday of grunge, and saw what that scene did to both to draw attention to Seattle and, in some ways, ensure that the scene would fade from national view once the initial buzz had died. These days, Seattle still has a number of strong musical acts but doesn’t seem to have the glow it once did. Is this better for Seattle music in the long run, or do you think it’s better for a local scene to have some national hoopla associated with it? I know bands like Pearl Jam feel like they had to take a left turn artistically (and with the public) in order to survive and protect themselves, to have long term careers. Do you agree with this?
I disagree with your opinion that grunge died when the buzz died. Not the case at all, in my opinion. Grunge never did die, to be honest. Ask Nickleback or any of these rock acts that use the dynamic stuff that was unique to grunge. By dynamics, I mean the verse being rhythmic and somewhat funky, then a little pre-chorus, which was usually all vocal and very little music … and then the explosion!!!!!! A chorus that made the fans mosh it up like back in the Circle Jerks days. That is grunge. What killed grunge in Seattle was the grunge bands themselves. They were all over the place telling the press, “We are not grunge!” When you create something new and cool like grunge, you don’t go out and diss it at its peak. Could you imagine Run-D.M.C. going around telling folks back in the ’80s, “We are not rap”? WTF? The fans take this as you saying you are no longer cool. I do agree with Pearl Jam’s moves to keep it hot at a grass-roots level first. I remember they sold out Key Arena here in Seattle and many people who couldn’t afford it thought they were going to miss them. Pearl Jam (classy mutha fuckas) did a show at a small club the night before for them. That is cool!!!!

Flaming Lips  frontman Wayne Coyne spoke to of what it was like to rub shoulders with PJ-style greatness at the taping of “VH1 Rock Honors The Who”.

We did a thing with the Who, Pearl Jam, Tenacious D last summer, this Who tribute at Pauley Pavilion. As much as you think, “Oh, there’s a bunch of giant rock stars in the building, this should be awkward,” that was wonderful. All the people working with the Who were always wonderful, even a couple of years ago when we played with them in Leeds, England, for the first time. So if you’re lucky you gravitate towards people who go about their day the same way you do.

And to run into Pearl Jam and Eddie Vedder and go, “Oh, those guys are into this because they love the music and to have a good time. It’s not about egos and showing who’s more powerful.” Even being around Chris Martin of Coldplay, I’ve really seen them from their very beginning. I was at one of their shows in England when their very first single, ‘Yellow,’ went No. 1 on that day. I’ve seen them be very gracious to people that didn’t deserve it. I think there are plenty of examples of people, giant rock stars, who are simply being normal people…When you’re around people like Eddie Vedder and Pete Townshend, you see they’re not insecure, they find it very easy to be a normal person.

The next quote is  from Max Cavalera, formerly of Brazilian metal band Sepultura and currently fronting the group Soulfly. He spoke to Performing Musician magazine excerpted at in their “Blabbermouth” feature.   And warning – it is not for the faint of heart.  It proves one thing though: Eddie Vedder is one cool human!  thanks to B.Smith and SolfPT from Bugs

“I puked on Eddie Vedder once,” Cavalera says. “It was on a SEPULTURA and MINISTRY tour. This is back when PEARL JAM were huge. Eddie was sitting to my right and the MINISTRY guys were on my left and everyone was enjoying themselves. Some of [the other guys that were around] were doing heroin, but I had absolutely nothing to do with that, I was just drunk as fuck. I’d drunk half a gallon of vodka before SEPULTURA played, so I was hanging out and being crazy and talking shit — and I couldn’t help it, but a load of vomit just came out of my mouth and went all over him. He was real nice: he didn’t care or nothing, he just got up and cleaned himself up and came back — and the minute he came back, I said to him, ‘I need your autograph for my sister.’ She was a huge PEARL JAM fan. People told me about this later, I don’t remember it. His face was just [makes incredulous look], and he gave me the autograph and left!”

Gotta Have Guts CCFA Run 2005, baby!

Gotta Have Guts CCFA Run 2005, baby!

Regular folks talk about PJ too!  Mike McCready likes to stay fit, and recently made a trip to Seattle Running Company to gear up.  How do we know this? One of the employees, fellow runner Brian Morrison blogged about it.  Mike was forthcoming with his thoughts about the new album and more!

I did have a very exciting moment at work the other day. Exciting enough to have taken at least a little sting out of being sick right now. Mike McCready, yes THE Mike McCready of Pearl Jam, wandered into Seattle Running Company the other day. Thankfully I was working and got to help him out. Rather than beat around the bush, I flat out told him that I was a huge fan. He seemed genuinely pleased to hear it. The guy seems incredibly down to earth and was quite friendly. He asked me a lot of questions about my own running. We even talked about Western States (a Northern California endurance marathon-ed.) and what it’s like to run 100 miles. Without coming across as a freaky fan, I told him that I thought the performance of “Got Some” was great. Again he seemed truly excited to hear it. The new album, he told me, is eleven songs long, and he described it as having a new-wavey feel. He said that it was great to work with producer Brendan O’Brien again. They last worked with him on 1998′s Yield. He was in the store for about 20 minutes or so and ended up getting a couple pairs of shoes. Interestingly, he’s not so much a runner as he is a cardio boxing participant. He even shared with me little news about a certain Seattle band playing a certain Seattle venue in the fall. It was pretty darn cool.

And finally, in the “Kathy From Recognizes That She Sometimes Takes It Too Far” department, a DJ from Seattle Radio Station Movin’ 92.5 has a fan in Stone Gossard.  DJ Brooke Fox of morning show Ladies Room did a song for her fellow DJ Monti Carlo’s unborn kid called “Danger Davis”, and apparently Stone heard the song and dug it.  Here’s proof of that from Brooke’s radio station blog/TwitterFeed

Stone Gossard of Pearl Jam heard Brooke’s song for Danger Davis! He still lives in Seattle with his wife and daughter and heard Brooke singing her song on The Ladies Room, that is amazing!  Brooke says on her tweet:  DUDE Stone Gossard from Pearl Jam texted my guitar teacher! He heard my “Danger Davis” song on the radio and dug it!!!!

Rock on, and talk on!

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.

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