We’re now approaching act three of Pearl Jam’s slate of shows for the 2022 tour. There has been discussion about all that has happened – the great performances, the surprises and the unfortunate cancelations, but in this episode, we get the privilege to speak with Variety and SPIN contributor, as well as the author of PJ20, Jonathan Cohen. Cohen has had his eye on the band throughout the year giving him a unique perspective on the band’s approach. We speak to him about the ins and outs of it all, as well as get a little information on what to possibly expect in September, as well as a little bit of info on how Pearl Jam has been proceeding with the new album they’ve been working in studio on. Great insight as always, lots to sink your teeth into!
The band was in a tough spot in Oakland after finding out that their Lamborghini, machine gun drummer Matt Cameron tested positive for Covid-19. They had some friends help them out such as Josh Klinghoffer and Richard Stuverud, but the big moment of the night came when Ed asked a simple question: “is there anybody out there who can play drums?” We get to speak with fan fill-in drummer Josh Arroyo about his entire experience living out a dream that would send any Pearl Jam fan to heaven. Josh’s story to get to that moment is nothing sort of amazing. From his father taking him to the Oakland Arena for the first time to see Rush on the Moving Pictures tour, the story comes full circle when he steps into the building with his 12-year old daughter to see her first Pearl Jam show. But that wasn’t the only special thing to happen that night. From his fandom way back to the Cow Palace in San Francisco all the way up to where he’s at today, less than a week from playing and he’s one of the most admired and celebrated fans around. Get to hear the amazing story and more in this special episode!
On the date of the 30th anniversary of MTV Unplugged, we released an episode breaking down every moment from that show and telling every story. Two months later and there’s still more to tell! You may remember going back to the earliest episodes this year that at the end, we asked our listeners if they knew anyone who was at this show to get in touch with us. We were waiting for that email, but unfortunately it never happened. Flash forward to the date that our episode is release, we get a comment on Twitter from someone who tells us that he was indeed there that night. One thing led to another, and here we are sharing the story of Ken Lesnik and what it was like to be in the building that night. As an employee of MTV, Ken was always invited to network events, but Unplugged took place just months after he left. A wild story about him being in the right place at the right time got him in the building that night. He’ll talk about the amazing experience that he had being very close to the front and how this night solidified his fandom. This episode is being released 30 years to the day of the first airing of this on television. There is never a bad time to talk about this legendary show, but there’s no more perfect time than right now. Enjoy Ken’s stories!
Back in the early days of the internet, communities were starting to evolve and develop all over the world wide web. Some people found them in public chat rooms, some found them on message boards, Pearl Jam fans found a special one in Five Horizons. 5H was the original Pearl Jam archival concert chronology that did remarkable research on the band’s history, cataloging details from every show that was available to them. Joining us today is Caryn Rose who helped put this project together. We’ll get to learn some of the ins and outs of running the website and the adversity they went through. Caryn doesn’t hold back on her stories regarding PJ stalker fans, people’s perception of her and Jean, and trying to stay away from the spotlight that came along with the site.
This episode is a special Pearl Jam Fan Profile featuring former New Jersey assistant Attorney General and CNN legal analyst Elie Honig! Elie joins us to talk about where his fandom all started and what it was like to be at his first show at Constitution Hall in 1995. We’ll get to learn many great stories about his fandom and he’ll ask us a few questions as well such as if Pearl Jam are the most athletic band and what our takes are on Hunger Strike and Release.
This week is the final week of July, so that means we wave goodbye to our month long celebration of Wrigley Field shows. In this episode we’ll tell stories about our listener;s experience being at these events. They range anywhere from ridiculous to emotional. We’ll even get to hear from a few people who had a direct connection with the performance where you may have even remembered Eddie mention their names. We had 40 or so people write in to us! Wow! That’s a lot of stories to tell! Which means we’re going to extend Wrigley Month by one extra day. On Wednesday we’ll cover the Night 2 2018 show and Thursday we’ll be releasing a part 2 from our mailbag. If your story wasn’t told in this episode, we PROMISE you’ll hear us tell it on the next episode!
We have two weeks left in our month of Wrigley-centric episodes and that means we’re going to finish up strong! This week we invite two guests onto the show, one is the voice of Sirius XM’s Pearl Jam Radio Rob Bleetstein and the other is a native of Wrigleyville Bob Krause. Rob has of course been to hundreds of shows during his time following the band as a fan and covering them for Sirius. He has great memories of being at these Wrigley shows, one especially coming from the 2013 show where the rain delay (and current state) could’ve potentially caused major challenges if his show had to go back on air. He’ll talk about the experience from all 3 shows and share some of his favorite venues and cities he’s seen the band in. Bob Krause, whom Rob dubs the mayor of Chicago, hosted a Real World of Wrigley House in 2016 and 2018 that held 35 fans in his Wrigleyville apartment for a full weekend of partying, BBQ and of course Pearl Jam. Being a Cubs season ticket holder he’ll talk about how special it was for the band to play in 2016 when the team was on their magical run to win the World Series, as well as an opportunity where he got to spend a game in the bleachers with both Eddie Vedder and Pete Townshend.
This week’s guest is the co-author of PJ20, former music booker on The Tonight Show and currently writes for Variety, Jonathan Cohen joins the show to talk about his experience being side stage at the Wrigley 2013 show and getting to witness the commotion backstage during the rain delay. Not only will you get to hear some great stories from that night, but he’ll also share a little bit of his experience from writing the PJ20 book and getting a peak into some of the myths and legends from the band’s history that went previously undiscovered. We’ll talk to him about his time on The Tonight Show and the booking of Pearl Jam week back in 2013 in preparation of Lightning Bolt and shares a special untold detail of one of the original acts that was booked to perform that week (it’s a huge reveal!) We’ll also ask him about the Gigaton listening party that he attended prior to the album’s release and getting a chance to drink tequila with Eddie and get his insight on parts of the album he was proud of.
We continue our month of Wrigley coverage with a special appearance from our guest Dr. John Evans. The majority of Pearl Jam fans know his story by now from the Let’s Play Two movie – he arrived at Wrigley 4 days ahead of time to get in line, Danny Clinch and his crew documented it and we got to witness an all-time personal dedication as Eddie and the boys played Release for John second song in the set. We’ll speak to him about some of the stories behind the camera and what was going through his mind both while waiting in line and being on the rail that night in 2016. Also, John has been on the front lines in the fight against Covid-19 and we’ll discuss some of the things going on in his world. Bottom line is this – wear your fucking mask.
Welcome to a month’s long celebration of the band’s five performances at Wrigley Field! Before we cover each individual show’s setlist, we’re inviting a special guest in from the either the music industry or the Pearl Jam community to tell their Wrigley stories. This week we have music journalist and host of the Rivals podcast Steven Hyden joining the show. Steven will talk about his experience at 2013 and how it reinvigorated his love for the band after not seeing them live for 15 years. We’ll talk about the weather’s effect on the day and how shows like this have lifted Pearl Jam into the conversation of one of the best American live bands in history. We’ll get his thoughts on Gigaton and where he thinks it belongs among the 2020 album releases.