Episode 225: Pittsburgh, PA – 9/5/2000

There are moments that happen on the Pearl Jam live stage where you understand that what’s happening before you is a once in a lifetime moment. They’ve created a plethora of these moments in their 30+ years of touring, but that’s what keeps the faithfull coming back. They come in all shapes and forms, but when a member of the crowd is invited on stage, you understand how big a deal it is. One of the earliest occasions of this happening was back in Pittsburgh in 2000. Ed noticed a woman with a white umbrella who had been following them from night to night, so he called her down to the stage to play her request for Wash that was written on the umbrella. We’re excited to be joined by Amy in this episode so she can share her amazing story with you all! From how it all happened that night, to how she was able to see 100 shows by this time, these stories are can’t miss!

But the show itself is important in it’s own right. It was the final show for the leg that occurred following the Roskilde tragedy. It was a bit of a tumultuous tour, but getting to play this show felt like a cathartic release for the band during this difficult time. The setlist is interesting for a couple of reasons. Due to a family emergency, opening band Sonic Youth couldn’t perform as a full band so the remaining members played in the pre-set. Including a collaboration with Ed on Binaural rarity Parting Ways, and obscure Who b-side Naked Eye. Outside of the request for Wash, which hadn’t been played in four years, the band pulled out another rarity in the encore with a version of I Got You by The Split Ends.

Also on the pod this week, we’ll read your answers for your favorite crowd interactive moments in the band’s history. And we’ll have three Gear Guru segments this week featuring thoughts on Sleight Of Hand, Rearviewmirror and Mankind.

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Episode 224: Antwerp, BEL – 8/30/2006

Out of around 1,200 shows played within the lexicon of Pearl Jam, there are inevitably some that are going to fall between the cracks. Those shows are mostly considered to be outside of the USA, just because the majority of active fans happen to be American. But there are hundreds of Australian, South American and European shows that over time get forgotten about mainly due to being fresh in people’s heads. This episode features a show from 2006 out of Antwerp, Belgium that some may not consider to be better than average just from viewing the setlist, but is extremely important when looking back on their entire history of playing there. Thanks to Gunter (never thought you’d…) Habets for the off the radar request!

This show is important because after 15 years it was their first in Belgium, but that was never the plan. They’ve had to make multiple cancelations back in 1992, and then again in 2000 as a show at the Rock Werchter Festival was slated to be the following show after Roskilde. Since the fans had been waiting a long time, and the band also waiting just as long, this felt like a massive show for everyone involved. The crowd is in top form coming up with creative ways to participate during songs like Small Town, Present Tense and especially Black. We’ll also hear the band put forth inspired versions of songs like Big Wave, Hail, Hail and a version of Even Flow with a massive Matt Cameron solo befitting of the era. We’ll also get the first appearance of Hunger Strike in three years, but was the Wolfmother frontman good enough to step into Eddie’s shoes? Very debatable.

Check out the answers for question of the week where we asked you all on social media what you thought was the best Avocado live track from the 2006 tour to see what songs ranked highest. And we’ll also have three Gear Guru segments this week where Javier will discuss the overall 2006 sound in songs like Unemployable, Big Wave and Alive.

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Episode 223: Philadelphia, PA – 4/28/2016

The City Of Brotherly Love has been home to countless legendary Pearl Jam shows and moments throughout their history. As a matter of fact, the night after this show was the show in which they they played the album Ten in full. Which makes some people forget about night 1 from 2016 due to the magnitude of the Ten banner being raised. But what good are we if we can’t give every great show a spotlight on this podcast? Because there is no reason why this one shouldn’t be discussed as an all-time classic show, and we’re here to prove that.

With the knowledge of the album getting a run, this show was constructed so that Philly people would get to see some rarities, including three that haven’t been played since that date – Gonna See My Friend, In The Moonlight and Education. But it didn’t matter what they played, because the crowd was on fire the entire night. Right from the top when opening up with Once (including the Master/Slave intro that they would of course repeat again the following night), you knew that the crowd was going to make this a night to remember. We’ll go in depth on Love Boat Captain, In My Tree, Jeremy, Crown Of Thorns and Crazy Mary where the crowd is at the top of their game. Also, how about a concert wedding up in Suite 225?

This episode’s question of the week is based off of the rare songs that we’ll talk about. We came up with a system for scoring your rarest songs you’ve seen, and we’ll calculate the numbers and share them with you! On that note, our Gear Guru, Javier, tackles a different approach to rare songs and discusses what the musical reason for not playing them is.

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Episode 222: Sendai, JP – 2/28/2003

It feels like whenever a band embarks out on a ‘world tour’, you can’t coin that phrase unless you make a pitstop in Japan. While Pearl Jam has never done a true official world tour, they’ve had the opportunity to visit Japan twice. The first time was in 1995, and then they went back for five shows in 2003. This episode focuses on the Sendai show from the Riot Act tour. These shows are always interesting because the crowd is a lot more reserved than your every day average concert crowd. This factor mixed in with a venue that maxed out at 1,000 seats meant that the band could create more of an experimental setlist, moving songs around in parts of the set that stray from normal scenarios.

The best example of this show going through the experimental route happens at the very beginning. It starts with Of The Girl, which seems normal, but the performance in itself sets up for the unconventional trio that follow – Immortality, Insignificance and 1/2 Full. The rest of the show maintains weird spurts of momentum with not many radio hits mixed in the main set. As for the hits go, this isn’t the crowd that’s going to follow the same kind of cues we’re familiar with. We’ll concentrate mostly on Better Man and how strange it was without any participation from the crowd.

We’ll answer our question of the week this week which stems off of the first four songs of the setlist, and our Gear Guru segment features Javier breaking down the juxtaposition between Mike and Stone’s solo on the show closer, Porch.


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Episode 221: Maui, HI – 2/21/1998

Let’s begin our Yield tour celebration by going back and covering the 25th anniversary of their two night stint in Maui. A destination show for Pearl Jam in a 5,000 person venue to kick off a strong slate of shows for 1998. Hawaii is a place that would gain importance over time as it became a second home for Eddie, and his friendship connections would later lead to him and Boom Gaspar meeting. This time period would also become known as the beginning of the end for Jack Irons as he would leave the band following the ensuing Australian tour leg.

As we’ve discussed in the past three episodes, we’ll once again have the chance to talk about some of the earliest performances of Yield album tracks. Songs like Given To Fly, Faithfull and MFC provided a punch and make an impact, while a song like Wishlist is still finding its way. This show features 21 songs in a shortened 90 minute set thanks to an early curfew, but the band leans heavily on No Code and the new songs while Vs. and Ten tracks are fairly limited. We’ll discuss the fourth of fourteen performances of Around The Bend during this episode!

If you like surprises, I think you’ll be satisfied once the episode gets to about the 50 minute mark! No spoilers, but you’ll enjoy this! Also, we’ll have our Gear Guru Javier back to discuss Stone’s wah wah pedal on Do The Evolution, and we’ll answer the question of the week – what is your dream destination vacation spot that you’d like to see the band do a residency in?


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Episode 220: Sydney, AUS – 2/14/2003

This is our first episode of a year long series featuring coverage of some of Pearl Jam’s milestone tour anniversary dates, and we’re gonna kick it off with the tour that will be dissected the most – the 20-year anniversary of the 2003 Riot Act tour. The pacific rim was their first stop as they visited Australia and Japan, and this episode will cover the third night in Sydney.

This was a little bit of a strange time for the band live. The Iraq war was on their minds and they had no problems being outspoken about it. Every show had a hint of it somewhere, whether it be the stage spectacle performance of Bu$hleaguer or even War tagged onto Daughter, it was pretty much guaranteed to be a nightly theme during this time. Another thing that looms heavily over the first leg is the Roskilde tragedy. Riot Act songs such as I Am Mine, Love Boat Captain and Thumbing My Way that were specifically written in the aftermath draw raw, emotional power as the incident was still fresh in their heads. There is a section in this show that will exhibit the pain and sorrow they were working through.

We also get Can’t Keep as the opener of this show, which led to our question of the week that you answered – what song that’s never been opened with before would you like to hear begin a show? Also our Gear Guru segments will discuss Mike’s octave pedal and how effective it was on the song Ghost, and the implementation of Boom’s presence and Stone’s guitar that make performances of Black stand out from this era. Oh, and McCready is a highlight on that too!

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Episode 219: Wembley Arena – 5/30/2000

We’re heading across the pond to London for a show that had the honorable distinction of being dubbed an “ape/man” bootleg back on the Binaural tour. It was a two night stint at the Wembley Arena, and as the norm within the history of this band, night two shows are usually can’t miss. But this night two kind of planted an early seedling for what future shows of this nature would look like, playing an entirely different set than the previous night and adding in some rarities for the fans attending both nights to feel like they got two very distinct shows.

With only four brand new Binaural songs performed on this night compared to night one’s eight, and a limited amount of Ten songs, the band went into every corner of their catalog to impress this crowd. We’ll spend some time talking about a the more uncommon songs such as a monster performance of Habit, the second instance where Untitled/MFC were played consecutively, In Hiding being played for the first time in two years and a tremendous Off He Goes. But the story here will be found in Not For You. Played at a slower tempo perhaps similar to a Neil Young song, this version would end in utter chaos in which a certain front man would receive a nice battle wound to the skull.

Our question of the week that you answered is have you ever been to a two night stay in one location, and what show did you think was the better of the two? Plus, our Gear Guru Javier returns to discuss some of Mike’s effect pedals that created the era specific sound for songs like Grievance and Nothing As It Seems.

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Patreon Exclusive: Tibetan Freedom Concert – Washington D.C. – 6/14/1998

As we celebrate the silver anniversary of one of Pearl Jam’s masterpieces in Yield, we wanted to present you with an episode focusing on a show smack dab in the middle of that era. You may remember the Tibetan Freedom Concert’s coverage on MTV in the summers of the late ’90s and that’s exactly where we’re taking this episode. It’s an important one because you can say that this is  Cameron’s first big show since joining in the interim that spring. We’ll talk about Jack’s exit, how Cameron developed along with the songs, the reason behind why this festival took place and an 8-song setlist during a fantastic tour year. Happy Yield Day! Enjoy!

Episode 218: Mexico City, MX – 11/28/2015

It’s been two years since we’ve covered a show in Mexico City, and there is absolutely no excuse for that. Just like every other Latin American country, the fans from Mexico are some of the loudest and most passionate of any Pearl Jam fans around the world. As the band is now potentially looking at eight full years since playing down there, its as good a time as any to to put focus on them.

There’s no question that this crowd is going to take up the majority of the story for this show. As the band was ending the nine-show run, the fans had been waiting four long years for them to return to the 62,000 person capacity soccer stadium. All of that energy bottled up was exploded from the first note of Pendulum. This crowd was especially prominent on songs such as Small Town, Do The Evolution, Corduroy, Daughter, Rearviewmirror and Black which we’ll talk about at length. There’s also an obscure cover from the Eagles Of Death Metal played here that had only been played on three nights as a tribute to the band who were in the aftermath of the Paris terrorist attacks.

Our question of the week – Have you ever been featured as part of the show? Whether it be a dedication, banter with Ed, a sign you held up or even high fiving Ed or Mike? There’s that, and we’ll hear from our Gear Guru Javier again this week talking about the cross play between Stone and Mike’s guitar’s during this version of You Are.

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Episode 217: Columbia, MD – 9/24/1996

I’ve been to hell I spell it… spell it DMV. We head down to the mid-Atlantic for this episode to cover a show from the Merriweather Post Pavilion in Columbia, Maryland that took place in the heart of the No Code era in 1996. It’s the perfect year for those great stories that revolve around ordering tickets from non-Ticketmaster venues and the budding collectables scene in the Pearl Jam community now featuring nightly posters. To bring us back to that point in time, we invite our Patron Brian Tuchalski on to the episode to retrace his memory of his first show and some of his favorite moments from that day.

1996 isn’t widely known as an era where Ed connects with the crowd often, but this show has a moment that may set it apart from others. During the bridge of Not For You, Ed stops to address the crowd to apologize if he’s missed any lyrics, and informs them that although the song may be called Not For You, it isn’t them that the song isn’t about. This kickstarted a great night for the crowd as they took over on songs such as Jeremy, Better Man, Blood and Yellow Ledbetter.

Tune in to check out everything, including the question of the week – what Pearl Jam era would you travel back to if you had a time machine? Plus, we invite our Gear Guru Javier back on to talk about Jeff’s cello sounding bassline on Who You Are.

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Episode 216: Toronto, ONT, CA – 10/5/2000

It’s been a while since we’ve revisited the Binaural tour, and now is as good a time as any to talk about it. We’re covering the Toronto show, the second show from the second leg of the North America run. While this one may get lost in the shuffle compared to other big shows from this leg such as Vegas and Seattle, there is a lot to talk about within the little pieces that made the songs sound the way they did in 2000. For the first time on the podcast, we’ll hear from our friend Javier Hervas, an expert on guitars and gear who’s studied all of the band’s different set ups throughout the year. I guess you can call him our Gear Guru! He’ll be helping us recognize moments in Sometimes and Brain Of J where both presented a distinct sound of the era, but he’ll let us know how that sound develops through pedals and distortion techniques.

That’s not the only guest we’ll hear from. This episode is a Patron request from Gaby Mockenhaupt who has come to appreciate this bootleg in recent years. We’ll tell her story about her intake of Pearl Jam living in Germany, and listening to this show on holiday. We’ll also invite to the show our friend Steve Bennett, the host of the Sports-Casters podcast, to discuss his story of traveling to multiple dates on this tour and giving us insight as to what was happening in the building on that night.

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Episode 215: St. Paul, MN – 10/19/2014

This episode is about breaking a stigma. No show could ever be at fault for following a marquee night where the entire No Code record was played on a whim. Nor can it be at fault for not being the show in Milwaukee the next night where the entire Yield record was done. But if you ask anyone that was in the building on October 19 of 2014 in St. Paul, Minnesota, they’ll tell you that they got a near perfect show. Pearl Jam hadn’t played in Minnesota (aside from some Target corporate party that doesn’t count) since 2006, but it was two shows where they were the opening act for Tom Petty. So for a full Pearl Jam experience? 2003. This crowd waited 11 years, and although they didn’t get an album show, there were enough moments here that this crowd holds special.

There are a few things to take away from this night. Although the setlist on paper may look like a pretty average Pearl Jam set, the performances are all delivered with a sense of purpose. This was the first instance where Ed spreads awareness for a rare skin disease called EB. Something he and his wife have raised millions of dollars for in order to find a cure ever since that day. He invites a doctor on stage who specializes in bone marrow treatment named Dr. Yakub Tolar, and the result is an inspirational moment where he relates what the band does to his own work in the medical field. Performance wise? It’s hands down Love Boat Captain as the best moment of this show, and it’s a must listen.

Thanks to our Patrons Kirk Walton and Ben Dwyer both for pitching this show. You’ll get to hear their stories during the episode.

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Episode 214: Self Pollution Radio – 1/8/1995

It’s our first show for 2023, and right off the bat we’re gonna take a shot at something we haven’t done before. After the Atlanta show in 1994, Ed took to the airwaves to DJ a show out of a van. It was such a success that he wanted to do it again, but this time feature live performances from the band as well as some other special guests in between spinning records from his personal favorite bands. This is famously known as Self Pollution Radio.

The broadcast took place shortly after the release of Vitalogy at a home that Ed owned in Seattle. He invited all of his friends over, meaning that at least one person from the big four (five if you include Mudhoney) Seattle grunge bands were all in attendance. While Pearl Jam performed some of the best songs off their new record, we also got to hear performances from The Fastbacks, Mudhoney, Soundgarden and the world premiere of Mad Season.

Many of you may remember flipping cassette tapes while listening to this show back in high school or college, so we attempt to bring you back to that moment where you had to stay up late during a 4+ hour broadcast to make sure you recorded the entire thing. We’ll talk about the Vote For Choice benefit that happened a few days after this, the Home/Alive compilation record, guests such as Mike Watt and Krist Novosellic and the ramifications of Ed giving out his phone number over a live broadcast.

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Episode 213: St. Louis, MO – 9/18/2022

We’ve made it to the last episode of the year and we’re tackling the one that everyone is still raving about after 3 months – St. Louis! With Randy and John both in attendance, we’re going to relive some pretty good memories of not just the show itself, but being around friends and getting the rare opportunity to see the community come as one in person. John will relay the tale of how pessimistic he was about Ed’s voice after playing the third night in a row, while Randy shares his journey that almost took him backstage.

This show was for all types of fans; old school fans who love the Ten era days were treating to an encore of songs that were written before 1992, serious collectors got to witness a few more uncommon songs to hear these days such as Of The Girl and Sad, and then the fan who just loves the buzzsaw of a rock n roll show got exactly that. On a Sunday night set, they took the stage in great spirits and made connections with the crowd throughout the duration of the show. The crowd more than did their part for this and we’ll talk about how on top of their game they were all night, especially with a newer song like Retrograde.

We have a very special story to share in this episode as well. You may remember that Ed dedicated Sad to a woman named Debbie. Debbie is a friend of ours, and she was kind enough to share her story that led to her request. It’s a must listen.

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Episode 212: Frankfurt, DEU – 6/28/2022

After Pearl Jam had to cancel the final two shows of the west coast run in May, there was a bit of a concern as to the state of the band when the European tour started in June. There were a few shows at the beginning of the tour that felt like pretty average, safe setlists. So on the fifth night of the leg, the band opened up the vault a bit and led way to fans experiencing some deeper cuts in Frankfurt. Thanks everybody for voting this in as the episode representing the Europe tour as we finish off the year recapping some of the best from 2022!

A beautiful 100+ year old building with amazing acoustics is where the band set camp for their first show in the city in 30 years. As mentioned, the big crowd moments were spread all throughout this night, and one of the biggest opened the show in Inside Job. That made way for more fan service performances such as Last Exit (being played for the first time in 2022), Fatal and In My Tree. The crowd did their part to give love back to the band as they treated this show like a big celebration. We’ll talk more about Gigaton songs, the Ukraine war and some of the songs that had an important run this year.

Question of the Week: When Pearl Jam goes with a set filled with songs more uncommon to hear than others, what songs make you gravitate to that set?

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Episode 211: Fresno, CA – 5/16/2022

With a full year of touring finally under their belt, the last three episodes of 2022 will feature a few of the best from each leg. We start off with an interesting one that took place on the west coast leg emanating from Fresno, CA. The band was in a tough spot with Matt Cameron still being sidelined due to Covid, but sometimes unfortunate situations can breed special moments. With Josh Klinghoffer and Richard Stuverud still back behind the kit to help out, they also recruited their original drummer, Dave Krusen, to take the stage for ten (double meaning there) songs for the first time at a Pearl Jam show since 1991. This performance was like comfort food for the old time fan who loved Dave’s groove off of Ten from the time they were a teenager. They played nearly every song from the record and gave Dave his moment to shine, something that he always deserved as a founder of the band.

Drummer drama isn’t the only hurdle they had to jump in Fresno. Ed was dealing with a bout of food poisoning that he claimed to be one of the worst he’s had aside from the infamous Polo Grounds show from 1995 where Neil Young replaced him in the set. Most of the songs prove to be a challenge for Ed vocally leading to some clunky performances in the beginning. But there is a certain movie character we compare him to once Krusen steps in and Ed suddenly seems much better. Can you guess who?

Question of the week we ask here is what songs do you think that Krusen could have been a good fit on if he had stuck around for later records.

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Episode 210: Detroit, MI – 10/16/2014

In this episode, we put a Stranglehold on Detroit Rock City as it’s time to Kick Out The Jams on this Elephant of a show with tons of Raw Power that emanated from Detroit in 2014. A 32-song set with an excellent crowd that took place in the middle of their Heartland Tour during the Lightning Bolt era, this show was dominated by Motor City Easter eggs, local sports legends and some things you’ve never witnessed before. Big thanks to long-time Horizon Leg Patron, Fred Blood, for requesting this as he’ll get to tell his story in the episode.

Though it was the show that preceded the wildly popular Moline No Code performance, people still talk about this one eight years later. There’s no shadow hanging over it, and it’s because it was an excellent mix of fan favorites, rarities and tons of memorable speeches. It was the sixth all-time performance of Black Red Yellow, the first instance where Release and Oceans opened up a show back-to-back and includes a highly emotional version of Light Years dedicated to Ikey Owens from Jack White’s band who had recently passed away.

Listen in if you want to find out what happens when you challenge Chris Chelios to a fight, and discover the reason as to why Get Right hasn’t been played in nearly 20 years. But stay until the end if you want to know which 2022 shows we’ll be covering during the month of December!

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Episode 209: São Paulo, BRA – 12/3/2005

It’s been quite a long time since we’ve covered something from down in South America, but thankfully we rectify our mistake in this episode. We’re going down to São Paulo, Brazil to cover a show from Pearl Jam’s first tour in the continent that took place back in 2005. This was a Patreon requested episode from Mike Radtke, and we’ll tell his story about how he came across this when collecting official boots and why it’s stuck with him ever since.

As it goes for shows in Brazil, the crowd is the big highlight. Now the crowd wasn’t fully developed into the traditional Brazilian crowds where everybody sings along to the melody of a verse or chorus, but they certainly did their part to stand out. Crazy Mary is a full fledge sing-along, Black has a powerful moment that leaves Ed mesmerized, and during Daughter the crowd takes it open themselves to start an It’s OK tag. All of this from the very active crowd, along with an incident dealt with by security during Alive.

In our question of the week, we asked our Facebook and Twitter followers how often they go back to South American bootlegs, we run through every answer before taking a dive into the set!

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Episode 208: Newcastle, AUS – 11/19/2006

In this episode we’re talking about one of the wildest sets in Pearl Jam’s catalog coming out of Newcastle, Australia in 2006. This is a one and done city at the point of this release, they’d never played Newcastle before then and haven’t played there since. There are two key factors as to why they played there in the first place. For one, world champion surfer Mark Richards made a push for them to play, as well as a fan made petition featuring 2,277 signatures of the locals. Since this was such a unique situation, the band gave Richards the important duty to put pen to paper on this set, and boy oh boy he didn’t disappoint.

If you like to listen and go to shows where Pearl Jam does something completely out of the ordinary, you may be sold on this show from the first note. For only the second time in history, Alive was played as the opener of the show. This is the true definition of the phrase ‘anything can happen at a Pearl Jam show’ and is why this show over time has been elevated to legendary status. We’ll take about the memorable moments from this version and how the song gave this show a very strong momentum that stayed consistently high the entire night.

And how about the other rarities? For only the second time in their history, the band broke out Undone for a performance, one of five all-time. Leatherman, Down, Masters Of War, Crown Of Thorns and Alone are more surprises that pop in to make this show stand out, as well as Even Flow closing the first encore and Corduroy beginning the second encore. Lest we forget, there is an incredible 9-song run with no stops to begin this night. This show takes you on a ride, so take a listen and come celebrate it with us!

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Episode 207: Chicago, IL – 6/18/2003

There are many big cities that Pearl Jam has touched down in that have historically held some of their best shows of all-time. Chicago is near the top of that very important list. Being the birthplace of Eddie Vedder, every time they play there there is an emotional, homecoming aspect to the show that brings out the absolute best of the crowd. In 2003, with Ed’s grandmother on hand to watch, they put together one of those big all-timer shows with a bootleg that still circulates on SiriusXM’s Pearl Jam Radio.

Nearly every song from this show was a nearly flawless performance ranging everywhere from your crowd favorites, to brand new Riot Act songs, emotional moments and songs that soar. We’ll talk about powerful performances from songs such as Release, Present Tense and Light Years, and we’ll get to praise this Chicago crowd for their hard work on Better Man and Daughter featuring a notable tag. We’ll also go over some listener answers talking about their favorite Chicago arena shows.

This episode is a Patreon request from Joey Goodsir who joins us to share his story of being a Gen Z Pearl Jam fan who found this bootleg on Apple Music where it molded his fandom to what it is today. He’ll chat about some of his favorite performances and focus on the big moments that he’ll speak fondly of.

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