Tuesday, June 27, 2006

Pearl Jam: Covers

The trigger shook, it was aimed right at my head. Yeah, Daniel e-mailed us in the middle of our almost legal proceedings with Thom Yorke and EZArchive and hit us up about how swell this fucking post was and how sweet it was that we kept it up for a whole two days. Well, here it is Daniel (first time e-mailer, long time reader), in it's entirety and I will add PJ's cover of The Who's "The Kids Are Alright" when I get out of my cave and back to my house.
I'm the guy. I'm the one. The blogger with the subscription to Rolling Stone. I know what you're thinking and that's fine. If you've been reading the blogs lately you realize that Rolling Stone is running a reality TV show on MTV with their interns and that these interns are complete d-bags. Gotcha. But, I've been sucked into the vortex. It happened a long time ago and the $12 a year continues to be worth it. Yes, it has its moments of boy bands on the cover and features on the likes of AFI and Good Charlottte, but I hang in there...and this week was one of those weeks when it felt good to open up the mailbox and see a new Rolling Stone, mainly because Eddie Vedder was on the cover which reads (as you can see): "RELUCTANT WARRIOR Eddie Vedder & Pearl Jam Return From Exile." Now, as Ben Harper puts it, "[i]t's not a comeback - they've never gone anywhere in my world."

Without going too far in depth in regards to the article I will say that it is worth it just to hear (or read) how mellowed out Vedder has become and how much influence the death (and life) of Johnny Ramone had on the recent album. I wasn't surprised to learn that Eddie, John Frusciante and Vincent Gallo (in his Black Cat spoken word appearance last year, Henry Rollins talked about being a habitual visitor as well) were frequent crashers at Ramone's house before he died, I was, however, surprised that Rob Zombie was:

Vedder, along with Red Hot Chili Peppers guitarist John Frusciante, Vincent Gallo and Rob Zombie spent hours at Ramone's house, where he would play them music (on a jukebox, not on a guitar) and show film clips of acts from Gene Vincent to the Dead Boys. "We were the students of Johnny Ramone, and forever bonded," Vedder says. "Never have I experienced a loss of someone I talked to with such frequency, in such depth, with such intimacy."
My favorite quote was from Eddie, early on in the piece, when he says "I feel like we've been handing in our work on time, and we've been getting A's and B's, but we haven't really raised our hand and spoken out in class...This record is us speaking out in class." There are some Online Extras at RollingStone.com.

I could go on and on about how much Pearl Jam has meant to me over the years, but I think the single, most important thing they gave me is a respect for the elders. I'm talking about The Who, Neil Young, The Ramones, The Buzzcocks, Dead Boys, The Clash, etc. On top of their own diverse catalog Pearl Jam has managed to take many songs under its wings and cover them at an extremely high level. One of the best parts of going to their shows is wondering if you will catch "Baba O'Riley" or "Sonic Reducer" or what Mike might do differently in the "Crazy Mary" solo this time. They have introduced me to a number of artists and also forced me to research different genres and get outside of my own niche. Growing up I wasn't exposed to great punk music or bands like Sonic Youth. But, through Pearl Jam I have to come to appreciate, and in many cases, love the bands that influenced them (Bad Religion, Fugazi, etc.) and the bands that they covered.

Without further adieu, I rustled up some of my favorite covers and in the process touched about every live PJ album I own. I couldn't decide on which "Sonic Reducer" cover I liked best, so I just put them both up. Fug it.

MP3: Pearl Jam - "You've Got To Hide Your Love Away"
@ State College, PA | May 3rd, 2003
Beatles cover | Link

MP3: Pearl Jam - "Know Your Rights"
@ New York City, NY | July 9th, 2003
The Clash cover | Link

MP3: Pearl Jam - "Gimme Some Truth"
@ New York City, NY | July 8th, 2003
John Lennon cover | Link

MP3: Pearl Jam - "Soldier of Love"
@ Hamburg | June 26th, 2000
Arthur Alexander cover | Link

MP3: Pearl Jam - "Fortunate Son"
@ State College, PA | May 3rd, 2003
Creedence Clearwater Revival cover | Link

MP3: Pearl Jam - "Fuckin' Up"
from the album LIVE ON TWO LEGS
written by Neil Young | Link

MP3: Pearl Jam - "Crazy Mary"
@ Seattle, WA | November 6th, 2000
Victoria Williams cover | Link
Note: Mike plays the "Stairway to Heaven" solo at the end.

MP3: Pearl Jam - "Sonic Reducer"
@ New York City, NY | July 8th, 2003
Dead Boys cover | Link
Note: Tony Barber of the Buzzcocks joins on bass.

MP3: Pearl Jam - "Rockin' In The Free World"
@ New York City, NY | July 9th, 2003
Neil Young cover | Link

MP3: Pearl Jam - "Sonic Reducer"
@ New York City, NY | December 31st, 1992
Dead Boys cover | Link
This is from a live CD recorded at The Academy that was offered for pre-ordering PJ's latest CD through the Ten Club. The CD has early versions of "Leash" and "Daughter" with different lyrics, performed live.

MP3: Pearl Jam - "Masters of War"
@ Benaroya Hall, Seattle, WA | October 22nd, 2003
Bob Dylan cover | Link
My favorite protest song, ever. I screamed my lungs out ('til it filled the room) when PJ played it at the Verizon Center this past May. I still love the quiet pain and humble strength of this bare bones version. The words can stand on their own.

MP3: Pearl Jam - "Don't Be Shy"
@ Boise, ID | November 3rd, 2000
Cat Stevens cover | Link

MP3: Pearl Jam - "Chloe Dancer"/"Crown of Thorns"
@ Atlanta, GA | April 19th, 2003
Mother Love Bone cover | Link | Link
Pearl Jam has only played the first song, "Chloe Dancer," once, and this is the track. I was present that night and did not know this fact until now. Mother Love Bone was the band that Stone Gossard and Jeff Ament played in before doing Temple of the Dog and forming Pearl Jam with Eddie Vedder. You can find the studio version of this track on the SINGLES soundtrack, it is played quite frequently throughout the film. Best line of the movie? Xavier McDaniel: "And Steve, don't cum yet."

MP3: Pearl Jam - "25 Minutes To Go"
@ Benaroya Hall, Seattle, WA | October 22nd, 2003
Shel Silverstein, Johnny Cash cover | Link

MP3: Pearl Jam - "Baba O'Riley"
@ New York City, NY | July 8th, 2003
The Who cover | Link
Note: Steve Diggle of The Buzzcocks joins on guitar.

MP3: Pearl Jam - "Last Kiss"
@ Philadelphia, PA | September 2nd, 2000
written by Wayne Cochran | Link

MP3: Pearl Jam - "I Believe In Miracles"
@ Mansfield, MA | July 11th, 2003
The Ramones cover | Link

MP3: Pearl Jam - "The Kids Are Alright"
@ Seattle, WA | November 6th, 2000
The Who cover | Link

MP3: Pearl Jam - "Betterman"/"Save It For Later"
@ Philadelphia, PA | September 1st, 2000
The English Beat cover ("Save It For Later") | Link
My first PJ show ever. Opened with "Sometimes" closed the first encore with "Whipping," "Do The Evolution," "Crazy Mary," and "Porch." Second encore? "Yellow Ledbetter," naturally. If I wasn't using public transportation from halfway up the Hudson River to get to Camden, I would have caught Eddie perform "Dead Man Walking" as a pre-opener. What can you do?

MP3: Pearl Jam - "Daughter"/"Androgynous Mind"/"Hold On"
@ Philadelphia, PA | September 1st, 2000
Sonic Youth cover ("Androgynous Mind") | Link
There I was. 20 years old, a junior in college, and by the end of the night, a deflowered member of the Ten Club.


Anonymous said...

I was going to put together a mix of standout pj covers, but I see you've beat me to it. These are gems. Well Done. And thanks.


Anonymous said...

missed 'em dammit. you sure dont keep stuff up for long do you

c said...

i hear you on that RS subscription. people hate on that mag, but it usually has at least a couple good tidbits in it. is it the same stuff as you'd find on an indie blog? no. which is precisely the point.

Courtney said...

I think my inner PJ fangirl actually just exploded.

Andrew said...

time to add Reign on Me to this list...Great post!