May 1, 2016 – Madison Square Garden, New York, NY, USA

Show at a Glance

  • Number of Songs: 35
  • Show Length: 3:00

Setlist

Main Set: Go, Mind Your Manners, Corduroy, Hail, Hail, Given To Fly, Low Light, Release, Even Flow, I Got Id, In Hiding, Rats, Down, (Dangerous Business)/Wishlist, Jeremy, Do The Evolution, Why Go, Lukin, Rearviewmirror

Encore 1: The End, Future Days, Off He Goes, Footsteps, Chloe Dancer/Crown Of Thorns, Unthought Known, Takin’ It To The Streets, Whipping, Better Man/Save It For Later, Porch

Encore 2: Elderly Woman Behind The Counter In A Small Town, Lightning Bolt, Black, Alive, Rockin’ In The Free World, Indifference

Pearl Jam Show Notes 5/1/2016:

Go opens with the classic album version intro. Ed mentions towards the end of the extended Corduroy that “I can feel it rocking,” referring to the infamous 2003 Garden performance. Following Given to Fly, Ed says he was going to request that the crowd shake the stage again, but it already happened! Low Light features a ridiculously long hold on the last note.

Release makes a rare mid-set appearance, dedicated to Jen and Tim. For the last lines of Even Flow, Ed throws the mic to someone in the crowd for the last chorus, getting it back at the end, saying “yeah, you’re in the band man.” Matt is introduced as “the assassin, the thoroughbred, the Lamborghini,” and then Ed points out Kenneth, the fan who sang on Even Flow, on background vocals:

“Nice job Kenneth…in about 2 and a half hours you might have to sing a couple because I might be gone…I’m glad I got back up.”

An extra line is added to In Hiding, “…cracks along the walls…I was tripping balls.” Rats is dedicated to Enrico Salvatore “Ratso” Rizzo, Dustin Hoffman’s character in Midnight Cowboy. Ed sings some of “Dangerous Business” (from Ishtar, another Hoffman film) before Wishlist, in which Ed gets political during the outro. Before Do The Evolution, Ed says, “Alright this is the song, this is where we get seismic…see if we can feel it,” and almost immediately he mentions they can feel it bouncing. After some South American-style call and response, Evolution goes right into Why Go without missing a literal beat. RVM features some forgive/forget improv by Ed. Out of the first encore break, Ed is sporting a Marathon Man shirt, another Dustin Hoffman film.

The End is played for the first time since 2013. Future Days is dedicated to Kevin, who’s fighting an autoimmune disease, and his wife Kim. This leads Ed to talk about EB, and says the song was written about his wife, leading to a piano-driven, sparse performance of the song. Crowd is singing loud and strong for Chloe Dancer, and continues into Crown of Thorns. “Takin’ It to the Streets” is an unusual choice, Ed says it was requested by an old friend, saying “Happy birthday Jack, you motherfucker,” and they run through just a couple of minutes of it. Ed goes off on the Townshend guitar windmills at the end of the Save It For Later tag. Small Town is played to the back of the arena.

Black is haunting and beautiful over 8 minutes, with an epic solo by Mike, who then takes a trip into the crowd during the Alive solo, getting close to the top of the first level. Matt Cameron’s son Ray gets Mike’s guitar roughly halfway through RITFW, leaving him to help out on tambourine duty. Mike gets the guitar back for Indifference, using a bow to add some effects.

 

Nick Smith

Writer & Contirbutor

I still remember the night as a 14 year old when a friend gave me a CD to listen to and the first notes of “Once” were so powerful it took hours to move on to “Even Flow.” Needless to say I was hooked for life. Since the age of 18, when I skipped school twice to get tickets, my never ending quest to see the band that changed my life as much as I could was on. Pearl Jam has been the constant companion on this crazy trip called life. Still hoping for a swig off the wine bottle, Bugs, and to be at a Buenos Aires show. I’d totally give the tambourine away to a kid, maybe mine someday.


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