Episode 272: Columbia, SC – 4/21/2016

We take a trip to what is now eight years in the past (extremely hard to fathom!) to cover Pearl Jam’s show in Columbia, South Carolina. There are two major themes heading into this show. Firstly, this show was originally intended to take place a day after a show in Raleigh, North Carolina, which was canceled in protest of the state’s HB2 law. The other big storyline heading into the show was the untimely death of rock ‘n’ roll legend, Prince, that was announced earlier in the day. With heavy hearts, the band set forth to pay tribute to a man who had given so much of his life to music, as Ed would call him, the most amazing guitar player he’d ever seen.

This is another show where we get to talk about John’s adventures and stories, so we’ll dig deep into the two top stories that dominated conversation on this night. It was a set with a shared balance of the deep cuts like Oceans, Light Years, Marker In The Sand, Sleight Of Hand and All Those Yesterdays mixed in with massive showstopping performances of Lightning Bolt, Immortality, I Got Id, Rearviewmirror, Chloe Dancer/Crown Of Thorns and more. But one of the more peculiar things about this set is an OTOTO (one time, one time only) performance of the Into The Wild track, Rise. Done as a birthday dedicated to his mom Karen, this song has not been seen at a Pearl Jam show since.

We’ll dig deeper into a few songs during our Gear Guru segments where Javier will break down Lightning Bolt rarity, Infallible, and for the first time ever give a full breakdown of Crown Of Thorns.


Episode 271: Atlanta, GA – 9/22/2012

We’ve had a very busy week! Album announcement? Check! Debut single announcement? Check! Tour announcement? Oh you better believe it, check! So of course there was a lot to react to during this time period, which we did with two episodes focusing on all of the great stuff that lies ahead. While the normal weekly episode may have been pushed back a day, there was no way that we weren’t going to get to Atlanta 2012 this week.

This one is personal in many ways for John. It was his first show in 14 years, but he would tell you that more importantly, this is the last time to date that Pearl Jam has visited Atlanta. Twelve years have gone by without returning to the city the featured one of the greatest Pearl Jam shows of all time in 1994. It seems a little befuddling, right? While much of this episode focuses on stories of being there and experiencing them for the first time in over a decade, there is a lot of questions to be asked as to why the band has ignored the ATL, and perhaps a plea or two to try and convince them to go back in the near future.

We have some solid performances of Better Man, Porch and Corduroy in this show, and Javier’s segments this week will focus on Why Go as well as an interesting effect added to a cover of The Clash song Know Your Rights. It’s tour time people, get excited. It’s the best!


Pearl Jam’s 2024 Dark Matter Tour Announcement Reaction Episode

It’s been a great week! After basking in Pearl Jam’s brand new single for Dark Matter on Monday, on Tuesday we were treated to a full blown 2024 touring schedule! 34 dates are spread throughout the course of seven months. Some shows in very familiar stomping grounds, others in spots where the band will be stepping into for the first time in over a decade. We break down each date and location, give a little context to some of the history of them playing there, and we’ll go over which shows we believe may end up being barnburners! Hope to see you on the road!

Listen to the Episode:


First Listen: Pearl Jam’s “Dark Matter” Single Reaction Episode!

Pearl Jam is back with their 12th studio album, Dark Matter. Last night we got our first taste of the brand new single, which happens to be the album’s title track. We break down what we heard from this song upon first listen and talk about the excitement this song brings for a record that’s been reported to be released in mid-April. We’ll also play clips from our listening party featuring members of the podcast community and their thoughts on what they enjoy about the song. It’s exciting around these parts in Pearl Jam world! Come help us start the celebration!

Listen to the Episode:


Gear Garage: Ep. 4 – Black Magic

Javier is back at it again and took on the daunting task of tackling Pearl Jam’s most vulnerable song. This episode is centered around Black. What Javier does is present where Mike and Stone connect and will talk a lot about the push and pull factor, where Mike let’s Stone’s guitar do the work until it’s time for him to find a heavy balance. Replicating the tone for this song was incredibly challenging, but our Guru will share with you how he was able to make that happen, which features an appearance of a guitar from the 1950’s. He nailed this guys. Check it out, and take in the deconstruction of this powerful song!


Episode 270: Nashville, TN – 9/16/2022

As we await details on Pearl Jam’s forthcoming twelfth studio album, the month of February will be dedicated to covering shows that Randy and John have attended in the past. First up, we’re gonna dig into the Nashville show from the Gigaton tour that they both were in attendance for. The weekend was a huge party as Pearl Jam was center stage on Broadway, but the run including Louisville and St. Louis was the first time they played three shows in a row since 2006. Feeling big energy from a crowd who was game all night and playing in an arena with impeccable acoustics, the band constructed a set jam packed full of show stoppers and great stories to live up to the hype of playing in Music City.

Randy and John have differing angles when it comes to their personal experiences on this night. For Randy, it was his fourth show out of six during that run with heavy hitting shows such as Toronto, MSG, Camden and St. Louis surrounding this night. He’ll talk about how some of the memories from this night tended to fade until relistening and rewatching the events that took place. For John, this was his first show since 2016, so after a six-year hiatus he was ready to jump back in and be a part of the atmosphere again. They, and everyone else who attended this show, were treated to a setlist that featured massive moments such as Nothingman as an opener for only the second time, an incredible back-to-back featuring Black and Present Tense, Rats thanks to that night’s tour poster, a mind blowing Immortality, a heavy hearted River Cross and many more moments that make this show stand out.

The Gear Guru segments for this show will focus on the aforementioned version of Immortality, and we’ll even get a little demo from Javier! And he’ll also discuss the 1958 Flying V that came from the Gibson Vault that Mike used on both Alive and Ledbetter.


Episode 269: Columbus, OH – 5/6/2010

This episode is a very spiritual affair that will have us look deep into the depths of Pearl Jam as a “religion” of sorts. We’re discussing Columbus 2010, and during one of Ed’s speeches he talks about it being national prayer day and considering turning the band into a religion in order to be tax exempt, and have Stone as their Jesus! So the episode is somewhat molded around the theme of the fanbase celebrating the band as if it were a religion, and how our experiences with the music also creates a common bond with others throughout our community. They even tie performances into this theme such as Faithfull, Marker In The Sand, and of course Alive.

While we read from the old testament of Pearl Jam, we are visited by a holy spirit in this show in the form of Mike McCready. During the pre-set, Mike came out and played a two-song solo set, something that he almost never does. Digging into a Stones cover of Dead Flowers and an original song written for his son, we’ll talk about his efforts and why a solo record could work really well for him. Another big topic from this show stems from an unsolved mystery of a fan local to the Columbus area. Brian Shaffer disappeared while out with friends in April of 2006, and 18 years later this has remained a cold case. Ed raises awareness to the situation, and it’s something that has remained a pinned thread on the Ten Club forum to this day. The band plays a haunting version of Come Back in his honor that makes for one of the most powerful moments at this show.

Thanks to our Patron, Travis Howell, for requesting this show and joining us to tell his story. Javier will join this episode to talk about how much he loves the sound of the 2010 tour (which is not very much at all) and will focus on Amongst The Waves and Marker In The Sand.


Episode 268: Melbourne, AUS – 11/16/2006

With some rumors swirling about Pearl Jam playing Australia this year for the first time since 2014, we thought now would be as good of a time as any to get into a show from down under. 2006 was the last time they played Australia without the help of the Big Day Out festival. For Melbourne, they were treated to three great shows in the same fashion that they had done in previous years, such as 1995 and 1998. While the performances are great from this show, there is one thing that will make this one go down in the annals of Pearl Jam history, and that is… Ed’s butt cheeks.

Yes, you read that right. Three nights in Melbourne means that shenanigans are bound to be had both after the shows and on the off day, which Ed had partaken in. During his escapades, he was informed of a traditional Australian drinking game in which you take a 50 cent coin, wedge it between your butt cheeks and then try and walk with it over to a cup and see if you can drop it in. In the spirit of a night three, Ed plays the game on stage to pretty hilarious results. Also, Stone takes a crack (ha….) at it as well.

Aside from that, we have some great performances at this show. We’ll end up talking about Jeff a lot who is prominent in the mix on such songs like Hail, Hail and Even Flow, and Javier’s segments this week will focus heavily on the Telecaster sound during World Wide Suicide and Save You, as well as Mike’s Ibanez (not Gibson) Flying V on Present Tense. Big thank you to our Patron, William Rees, who submitted this episode request and joins us to tell his story

 


Episode 267: Prague, CZ – 9/22/2006

This episode is manhandled by a recurring theme in which Pearl Jam has never attempted prior or since. On a 2006 night in Prague following a very memorable series of shows in Italy, the band balanced a main set sprint with a first encore where five songs all connected. As we are used to sometimes seeing the songs Better Man, Nothingman and Leatherman used together in what has been dubbed “The Man Trilogy”, on this night the trilogy expanded it’s tribe by adding in Dead Man and Man Of The Hour into what we dub as The Man Pentology. This is a one off instance which was never repeated in this group of five again, and we’re excited to share it with you because it’s things like this that seem to get forgotten about over time. Especially at a show that was not played in America.

As mentioned, this is one of the fastest main sets you’ll ever witness from the modern era clocking in at an hour and 8 minutes. When sets tend to trail on the faster side, that’s all thanks to Matt Cameron’s furious pace that he brought to the table during shows in this era. Songs like Sad, Daughter and Marker In The Sand were all revved up more than usual, and even the songs that already have that identity  such as Last Exit, Whipping and Animal were all amped up a little more than usual. We’ll work quick through this set, but not before taking a moment to feature some of our favorite songs, including a few Filthy Fills tossed in there.

Check out this week’s Gear Guru segments with Javier where he’ll break down a phaser that McCready uses on Life Wasted, to talking about a pedal no longer featured on Stone’s board that was implemented in this version of Insignificance.


Episode 266: Birmingham, AL – 4/9/2003

The coldest show in Pearl Jam history located in East Troy, Wisconsin was so cold that it was dubbed the nickname ‘The Ice Bowl’. When you think of cold weather areas, Wisconsin makes a lot of sense to have held the coldest show ever. But the second coldest show? If you had Birmingham, Alabama on your bingo card, I will assume you’ve cheated. Yes, you’ve heard correctly. On a cold night in April of 2003, Pearl Jam played in front of a smaller capacity crowd in 40 degree weather… in deep south Alabama. It’s kind of crazy to say aloud, but the storyline for this show is how both band and crowd react to the situation, and the put together a very good show despite all that transpired. Our Patron Tasker Hewitt will join us for the episode to talk about his experience of being in the crowd on that night.

The weather isn’t the complete story here, because had they of sold well for original venue Birmingham-Jefferson Convention Complex Arena, they wouldn’t have had to worry about the rough temperatures. The original plan was for them to play in the same arena which they played in 1998, a larger capacity building than the amphitheater they’d end up moving to, but tickets were not in very high demand and that’s what forced the switch. This led to a great crowd full of hardcore fans that all filled up the GA ready to make it a memorable night. In ways it was. They have some great stretches of songs in which the band purposefully made sure that the crowd stay energetic, the best example being a stretch of Even Flow, Daughter and Better Man played as the 4th 5th and 6th songs of the night. There are some great moments in this set. We’ll spend a lot of time on songs such as Thumbing My Way and Animal, and Black will be a massive discussion point as well.

But if there is one thing to take away from this night, it’s the way they ended this show. After Yellow Ledbetter, the band still has their instruments strapped in. A tease of Sweet Home Alabama from McCready at the end of Ledbetter would potentially make this crowd think there was more ahead. Instead, it was one of the weirdest troll jobs in the history of this band. Matt clicks his sticks four times, the band strums one note, and everyone walks off as if everything was normal. We’ll get into this at full detail and try to figure out what the hell was going on.

Javier returns to the show this week for segments focusing on both Even Flow and Black!


Episode 265: Camden, NJ – 9/1/2000

Welcome to the unofficial sixth season of Live On 4 Legs Podcast! While 2024 is gearing up to be a massive year for Pearl Jam and we plan to be there covering it every step of the way, we’re still very excited to get you guys the weekly episodes covering all of your favorite shows throughout the history of this band. We’re going to kick off the new year with a great show from the Binaural tour in 2000 located in Camden, New Jersey. This show took place near the end of the first North American leg, which had it’s ups and downs due to it’s proximity to the date of the Roskilde tragedy. By this point, the band had kind of found their own way out of the funk and strung together some excellent shows down the home stretch.

This Camden show is a standout due to it’s remarkable run from the middle of the main set straight through to the end. It kicks off with an electrifying Given To Fly, features a version of Better Man which we’ll have tons of talking points about the tag, Present Tense’s “twinkle”, Spin The Black Circle’s sheer speed and Black’s ability to melt your soul. It was not the best show for Ed’s voice, but everyone powered through it and the band had his back in times which he struggled. Another storyline from this night was the contingent of fans who brought signs for Breath with them, very similar to the moment at MSG on the previous tour, and for the only time during this entire tour year the band makes a setlist adjustment in order to play it.

Also, what 80’s metal songs were tagged at the end of Yellow Ledbetter? Stay tuned, the answer may surprise you… or may not. You can pretty much look that up.


2023 Pearl Jam Live Show Hall Of Fame Induction

It’s the end of the year and time to relive the things we’ve accomplished in 2023. Only six shows from episodes covered this year ended up with a perfect 10 score from both parties, so we’re bringing them all back for a little year in review before heading into a brand new year in 2024. Those six episodes are Mansfield night II 2003, Mansfield night III 2003, Birmingham 1998, Slim’s 1993, Hartford 2013 and Chicago night I 2023. We’ll play a clip from each of those episodes and talk about our personal favorite episodes this year, and we’ll talk about your favorite episodes as well! And of course, what’s an end of the year episode without giving you a little hint of what’s to come for the Live On 4 Legs 2024 season?! All of that, and our two veteran’s committee episodes get inducted voted by you the fans. Thanks for a great year!

Listen to the Episode:


Episode 264: Chicago, IL – 9/7/2023

It’s our final episode for the 2023 season, and what better way to close out than finishing with a show from this tour year. In the last episode, we covered the night one show from Chicago, and this episode will take us to the second night at the United Center. This show had a lot to live up to in many people’s eyes as night one was considered, at least by our panelists, as an instant classic show. The second night had to follow up on all of the stories, rarities and energy that made night one so special. And in ways it certainly did live up to it, but perhaps did it fail to capture the same magic as the show on September 5th did? We polled our social media followers and asked them what they thought the more impactful show was, and we’ll share the result on the episode.

There are a couple of big takeaways from this show. They involved the local sports teams into the night a little more and featured a version of Present Tense coming off the popularity of The Last Dance, and they also made an announcement that the Blackhawks would be retiring Chris Chelios’ number. The rarities were once again in the mix as this crowd was treated to some of the more difficult songs to catch at a Pearl Jam show nowadays – Tremor Christ, Green Disease and Marker In The Sand. But there is a big elephant in the room to address that took a stranglehold over the second half of the show, and that is the contingent of Ten songs played. Compared to night one where Gigaton led the clubhouse with 4 songs off the album played, there were a whopping 8 songs from the Ten record on this night. Of course the majority of your crowd is going to love Ten, in this scenario the question needs to be asked – how much is enough?

We’re joined in this episode by our Gear Guru Javier Hervas, not just for a few sprinkled in segments, but for the entire episode! Javier and Randy sat with each other at this show and will share all of the stories of hanging out with friends, finding good records, taking shots of Malort, and of course, the performances. This includes a story about a nickname given to Randy by another fan at this show that a few people out there would probably not want to stick. All the answers will be found in the episode that we have made.


Evolution Series: #24 “Out Of My Mind”

Every year during our holiday party, we give you guys a special little treat and do an evolution on a lesser played song that had some significance on the tour this year. Enter: Out Of My Mind. Getting played for the 5th time overall and the first since Fenway in 2018, we thought it would be a cool tie in to get this as your holiday present. Of course the song starts out as an off the cuff improv in Atlanta 1994 which then has a life of it’s own when they put it as a b-side on the Not For You single. it went for 15 years without being played until the big night at the closing of the Spectrum in 2009. We’ll get into conversations on whether this song could’ve or should’ve been something more than it was, and how it might have worked on Vitalogy.


Episode 263: Chicago, IL – 9/5/2023

Let’s finish off the year strong by covering the two night stay from this year’s Chicago shows! We’ll talk extensively about night 1 in this episode and discuss why this was in fact a true instant classic in the Pearl Jam catalog. It had a perfect mix of everything you want from a Pearl Jam show – electric performances, great crowd connection, incredible storytelling and of course ones for the serious collectors. Randy was at this show, which means he’ll do his own fair share of storytelling about the moments that made a profound impact on him, and a little of the journey that took him from Connecticut to Chicago. Including one horrifying story about a bathroom in a Chicago dive bar…

Being in Chicago, the show is of course a homecoming party for Ed. But this was the first instance where they played a show outside of Wrigley Field since 2009. So now you have a much more intimate crowd, how does the night go down? Well for starters, Release is going to end up being your opener, because that’s always what happens there. Then you’ll get a Bulls or Cubs reference, a few stories about his days living there as a child and maybe some shout outs to friends. Those things happened, but the night wasn’t about any of that. It was a night to pay homage to family. Having attended his Aunt Sandy’s funeral the day prior, Ed was feeling nostalgic for going back on some of the memories he had of his grandmother’s apartment growing up. The story that unfolded from revisiting the old stomping grounds was an emotional high point on a night where there were many. We also got a Rearviewmirror dedication for beloved community member Frans Von Franquemont who lost his battle with cancer earlier this year.

The Gear Guru warms up for his big full episode appearance next week by gushing over a rare type of pedal that Mike McCready used for Retrograde that was heard in the song Higher Ground, and talking about the bag of tricks Mike doled out in this edition of Even Flow.


Evolution Series: #23 “Indifference”

Welcome to another Evolution episode! We’re gonna spend some time with Indifference for this one. We’ll trace the steps from the early days for a song that maybe wasn’t a stereotypical Pearl Jam 90s track, but happened to make an impact with crowds as a closer from the very beginning. But then a little song called Yellow Ledbetter comes to town and basically makes sure that Indifference is barely another option over the next handful of years. But the resurgence for this song comes within a little help from friend of the band Ben Harper! We’ll evolve through and discuss how his impact seemed to change the trajectory of the song to where it would turn from being a rival to Ledbetter, into co-op usage. It’s a good one! Enjoy!


Episode 262: Vancouver, BC, CAN – 9/4/1993

This episode is our fifth and final in our run of celebrating 30 years of the Vs. era. We’ve decided to go backwards a little bit and veer away from the November/December shows by covering one from Vancouver when they opened up for Neil Young back in September from that year. After five years, this is our first opportunity to discuss a show that emanated from the Seattle’s neighbor to the north, so we’ll take some time to dig into the history of shows from there and find something special about each of them. For this show in 1993, it’s only 16 songs, and suffers a bit from really bad acoustics in a big football stadium that did not meet expectations of ticket sales. Although Pearl Jam and Ed seemed ripe to take a jab at the place every opportunity they got, they made the most of it and gave the crowd a preview of half the Vs. record which was still over a month away from being released. This show was also the follow up to the legendary performances of Animal and Rockin’ In The Free World at the VMA’s, so we’ll talk a little about the immediate impact of those two moments.


Episode 261: Las Vegas, NV – 12/1/1993

It’s Groundhog Day… again! For the fifth time in seven episodes (and it’ll be sixth in eight next week before getting to some 2023 shows) we’re celebrating the 30th anniversary of the Vs. tour. The tour certainly had it’s ups and downs, and while the last two episodes could be considered some of the down moments, this second night in Vegas is the follow up to a show that’s pound for pound one of the best on this tour. The first night in Vegas featured a reunion of Green River, and the moment where Jeff and Stone joined Mark Arm and Steve Turner for the first time since 1987 seemed to re-energize the band.

As they only had two more dates before ending the tour on a triple header back home in Seattle, you’re able to tell that a little bit of the weight was lifted off their backs. It had been a year of growing pains, but on most nights they were able to put aside their struggle with fame to spend 90 minutes giving the crowd a show to remember. All of the positive energy was radiant on stage at this show with Jeff doing his signature zips and leaps across the stage and Ed’s voice having that trademark ferocity for the era. We’ll dig deep into songs like Go, Glorified G, Daughter, Garden, Blood, Porch and others that were the highlights from this night.

We’ll also react to the news announced by Matt Cameron that the new album is mixed and ready, and the Gear Guru segments this week will dig into an intro for Daughter that had a very 80s, Tears For Fears or Police sound to it, and will get into Mike’s experimental, Sonic Youth inspired sound on the Porch solo.

 


Episode 260: Nacogdoches, TX – 11/20/1993

Let’s stick in 1993 for this episode and head over to Nacogdoches, Texas, a show that takes place only days after Ed’s arrest in New Orleans that we talked about last week. This show yet again presents all of the trials and tribulations of being on tour in 1993. After playing nearly non-stop, and spending their off days working on and recording brand new music, the rigorous travel had finally gotten to the health of Dave Abbruzzese where he is needed to rush to the emergency room after the main set. This left for the band to improvise an encore without drums.

We invite one of the most knowledgeable Pearl Jam minds onto the show that wrote THE book chronicling the history and timeline of Pearl Jam in PJ20, Jonathan Cohen. Jonathan joins us to give a little bit of context to the era and why the band had a difficult time dealing with their skyrocketing popularity, and what they did to seek the advice of rock ‘n’ roll’s elder statesmen to help guide them through. We’ll also talk a little bit about Pearl Jam’s 2024 plans and what you can expect from a new album year!

We’ll spend some time on some interesting setlist decisions from this show, including the choice to open with the Daughter/Glorified G combination, Sonic Reducer in the middle of the main set and of course the decisions made without Dave on hand. The Gear Guru segments will break down both Yellow Ledbetter and Footsteps that were performed without drums at this show.

 


Episode 259: New Orleans, LA – 11/17/1993

As we continue our ode to the 30 years of the Vs. tour this November, we’re stopping at a show that’s known for both what happened during the concert, and then what happened in the aftermath. The show is an unforgettable night from this tour highlighted by a very early rendition of Crazy Mary in which original songwriter, Victoria Williams, joins them to play guitar and sing, and long-time Pearl Jam producer, Brendan O’Brien, is called upon to play the B3. It’s a moment that’s etched in history, but perhaps gets overshadowed by the events that took place the following night. After a dispute with a fan in a New Orleans bar, Eddie Vedder was arrested for public drunkenness and disturbing the peace after spitting in the man’s face. We’ll take the early portion of the episode to discuss about the incident as we’ll invite the 1993 American League Cy Young award winner, Jack McDowell, onto the show, who was there during the occurrence.

We’ll talk to Jack about his relationship with Eddie and how they met through their ex-wives, how Pearl Jam got his band V.I.E.W. bumped off a gig at CBGB’s, how he and Ed convinced TV reporters that Ed was a White Sox call-up, and of course the New Orleans situation. Get to hear what he thought of the whole ordeal and how his night ended up after getting into it with the friend of the agitator that Ed had to deal with. There was only so much time that we had to share of his interview in this episode, but check out Patreon this week for the director’s cut of the interview featuring stories about his band’s V.I.E.W. and stickfigure, Pearl Jam’s relationship with baseball and his current frustrations with baseball analytics that he likes to write songs about.

As for the show, there are excellent performances that we’ll get to dig into from Why Go, Footsteps, Porch, Rats, Blood and of course, Crazy Mary. We’ll also discuss Release being an OTOTO Daughter tag and a wild sequence that featured Ed singing lyrics from Michael Jackson song “Ben” into a fierce, unrelenting rendition of Blood. Our Gear Guru segments this week will focus on some of the slide guitar features of Rats, and of course, the contrast of this version of Crazy Mary compared to what we know of it now.