August 20, 2018 – Wrigley Field, Chicago, IL, USA

Show Notes:

Ominous weather all day culminates with a 2 hour rain delay, bringing back memories of 2013. Ed enters wearing swim trunks, says “Good evening,” and asks the crowd to give themselves a big hand. Given to Fly lyric is altered…

Show Notes: 

Ominous weather all day culminates with a 2 hour rain delay, bringing back memories of 2013. Ed enters wearing swim trunks, says “Good evening,” and asks the crowd to give themselves a big hand. Given to Fly lyric is altered to “made it out to Wrigley felt the rain in the breeze.” Right on cue, rain begins pouring harder and continues through the next four songs. After Mind Your Manners, Ed asks to see the crowd and plays call-and-response. He refers to Boom and a Hawaiian expression that rain is a blessing, and explains that this night is the answer to his childhood dilemma: “it rains in heaven.” Do the Evolution lyrics are flubbed, Ed asking the crowd during Stone’s solo to “sing in the rain.” Rain is wonderful and appropriate. Throw Your Hatred Down is dedicated to the South Side, “with love.” Even Flow gets extended due to another blooper (to the dismay of Stone) and Ed improvises lyrics to make light of the situation. He praises Mike who, in his plaid pants, had his behind-the-back solo moment, shouts out Buddy Guy, and spots a “The Incredible Matt Fucking Cameron” sign, trying different versions of the phrase. “Goodbye Girl” intro to Immortality. Jeff, with “META-PHOR” still on his amps, referencing the Missoula controversy, shines during ‘Jeremy.’ After Lukin, Ed plays a reprise with “I’m going to Wrigley” lyrics. After the break, Ed comes onstage wearing a Chris Chelios jersey and announces that the band will no longer tour from April to October because he’s been offered a dream job to “smoke some pot and put up some numbers” in the scoreboard. White Stripes’ Lots of Chicago references during We’re Going to Be Friends. Chelios then appears with the late Stan Mikita’s jersey, and Come Back is played in his family’s honor with the 2016 World Series trophy in the background. “Go Cubs Go” call-and-response during Corduroy. Ed asks the band not to leave the stage during the “encore” transition due to approaching extended curfew. Smile is played by request. Dirty Frank chants are answered with the first live performance of Ten-era rehearsal track Evil Little Goat. Baba closes, with Danny Clinch playing harmonica and Ed destroying his blue telecaster. Poor Stone misses the band photo, and Ed thanks each section of the field by Cubs player name.


August 18, 2018 – Wrigley Field, Chicago, IL, USA

Show Notes:

Ever conscious of the band’s relationship with the weather at Wrigley, the opening lyrics of Wash are changed to “oh please don’t let it rain today…this city’s so fuckin pretty.” Low Light is played as the sun sets, always a…

Show Notes: 

Ever conscious of the band’s relationship with the weather at Wrigley, the opening lyrics of Wash are changed to “oh please don’t let it rain today…this city’s so fuckin pretty.” Low Light is played as the sun sets, always a special moment. The Wrigley crowd belts out Small Town, and Ed remarks “you sound warmed up.” 2 songs in the uptempo section make their 2018 debuts, Breakerfall and Getaway. Leaving Here early in the main set is a surprise, Ed asking everyone to “keep a high modicum of respect for your fellow man, and certainly the women.” After a fantastic Present Tense, Ed comments, “nice to play a song like that under the beautiful moon of Wrigley Field,” and continues, saying that he sees a sign that reads, “Play ‘Black, Red, Yellow’ you Evanston pussy.” Teasing, Ed responds “We played it two years ago…where were you? Mike, will you just rip his head off with the guitar during this next song?” and Mike obliges with a ridiculous Even Flow solo. Missing is played next, as a perfect and heartfelt tribute to Chris Cornell. Ed introduces Matt, saying, “it’s like being the greatest pitcher and the greatest hitter” (referring to Matt’s roles in PJ and Soundgarden). Not For You is extended, with a call and response section where Ed asks the crowd to “say hi to [Cubs manager] Joe Maddon,” and they go back and forth with “heyyyy Joe,” then talks about how he “sure found joy in this place as a 6/7-year-old.” After Wishlist, Ed talks about this guitar that he has never taken on the stage before, given to him by Tom Petty during his last tour and that the Wrigley stops meant so much to him. Ed asks the crowd to light up their phones so that “we can all see you..get Tom to come back and visit,” then treats the crowd to a solo electric version of I Won’t Back Down. In the encore, Dennis Rodman brings Ed a ukulele after Just Breathe and thanks Chicago for their support and for always believing in him. The two ‘Singles’ soundtrack songs are played back to back. Ed is giddy as he talks about the Cubs to open the second encore, giving a huge thanks to Tom Ricketts (Chairman of the Cubs) for saving the 2013 show. Ed brings Tom out to the stage with the World Series trophy as the video screens replay a dramatic Cubs walk-off. The celebration continues as Yellow Ledbetter closes the show. Ed switches the lyrics to “I want to come this way again” and signs off with “Thank you, Chicago…sure is nice being in centerfield.”


August 22, 2016 – Wrigley Field, Chicago, IL, USA

Show Notes:

Ed walks out onto the stage and proclaims that “it’s gonna be a looooong night,” setting the tone for the final show of 2016. The first 13(!) songs are all from the 90’s, paying service to the long-time fans that…

Show Notes: 

Ed walks out onto the stage and proclaims that “it’s gonna be a looooong night,” setting the tone for the final show of 2016. The first 13(!) songs are all from the 90’s, paying service to the long-time fans that have made Chicago such a memorable place to see them play. Unique setlist construction in the beginning of the show, as Footsteps, Off He Goes and Better Man are played in the 2, 3, and 4 spots. Ed gives a shout-out to the folks on the rooftop at Wrigleyville, saying it was there that he witnessed a “certain smoking utensil” for the first time. Prior to Corduroy, Ed’s voice fills the air with a snippet from Jane’s Addiction song “Summertime Rolls” for the first time since touring Lollapalooza in 1992 24 years ago. After Animal, Ed toasts the crowd and says they are so grateful for being asked to play there again. When they were asked, Ed responded “we’d have to sleep on it…when I did, I woke up in the middle of the night and had a dream that the Chicago Tribune headline said ‘lightning strikes twice,’” calling back to the infamous weather delay from the 2013 show. Black, Red, Yellow is played for only the 7th time, dedicated to the Chicago Bulls. Bulls legend Dennis Rodman joins them on stage and attempts to recite his answering machine playback line featured on the studio version. I Am Mine breaks the streak of 90’s material. Another rarity is broken out later in the set, as the unreleased Of The Earth makes an appearance. This version has a ton of power behind it, with a jammy and explosive bridge creating a euphoric, thunderous moment when the bridge transitions back into the lead riff. The momentum comes to a halt during Lukin, as Ed stops the song to call out an overzealous fan shoving his fingers in a woman’s face. The fan is escorted out by security as the crowd gives him the “hey hey goodbye” treatment. Then they pick up exactly where they left off, finishing Lukin with intensity. In the encore, Ed jokes that the fan who was kicked out looked like Steve Bartman (infamous Cubs fan known for interfering with a fly ball during an important playoff game), and makes mention of the flags around the ballpark, dedicating Throw Your Arms Around Me to all the travellers. A fan named Bob gets to sing along during Even Flow and gets some credit from Stone, before Stone takes the mic himself to sing lead on Don’t Gimme No Lip. The encore ends with more throwbacks to the early 90’s, ripping through loud and furious renditions of Sonic Reducer and Blood. Boom’s B3 is prominent on Crazy Mary, as he matches the sound of the Wrigley Field organ during his solo and tags the Rolling Stones’ Paint It Black. Ed tells a story about the late Cubs Hall of Famer Ernie Banks and how during the 2013 Wrigley show, Ernie asked to keep Ed’s mitt which he said had a lot of love in it. Ed received his mitt back that night and proclaimed that a lot of magic is gonna happen there in the next few months (the Cubs would break their 108 year World Series curse that October). Ed’s Cubs anthem All The Way is played for the final time, as after the Cubs won the World Series he stated that he’d never play it again. A cover of Time Has Come Today, originally performed by The Chamber Brothers, is debuted late in encore 2. Rockin’ in the Free World has a lyric change, “Cubs colors on the streets,” and I’ve Got A Feeling, the song that closed out the show from The Metro, just down the street from Wrigley, in 1992 closes out this show. An instant classic, full of fun covers and 90’s fan favorites.

Written by: Randy Sobel


August 20, 2016 – Wrigley Field, Chicago, IL, USA

Show Notes:

The first of the two Wrigley 2016 shows starts off with Low Light, as Ed pleads with the weather: “clouds roll by…” Immediately after, Ed shares “the last time felt like a once in a lifetime experience…and then when the…

Show Notes: 

The first of the two Wrigley 2016 shows starts off with Low Light, as Ed pleads with the weather: “clouds roll by…” Immediately after, Ed shares “the last time felt like a once in a lifetime experience…and then when the lightning hit, I was hoping it was a once in a lifetime experience…but nature is working with us tonight, and I think you’ve earned it…is there a guy named John in the front? Where’s John? Just want to point out someone here up front because he was the first guy in line two days ago…four days ago…and he wanted to be in front for this song because it meant a lot to him and he’s going through some stuff, and we’re gonna help him out,” leading to an emotionally charged performance of Release. After Release, the band launches into a cover of The Beatles’ Rain, another not-so-subtle nod to the weather the last time they played Wrigley. When Lightning Bolt starts, Ed remarks “gutsy move playing this one…” Amongst The Waves is dedicated to “Lake Michigan on a windy day.” Before Light Years, Ed wishes Gord Downie, the singer of the Tragically Hip who had recently been diagnosed with brain cancer, well on the last night of their farewell tour, saying “I just want to send them our energy from our gathering up to their gathering and wish the best to Mr. Gord Downie, we love ya.” Masters of War is performed electric, which gives the typically folk-tinged ballad an ominous, harder-edged feel. During the Save it for Later tag on Better Man, Ed hilariously goes off on a fan in the front row wearing a Whitesnake t-shirt, luckily the women next to him were wearing a “Janet Fucking Weiss” shirt and an “Unfuckwithable” shirt, which Ed gushes over.

After the break, Ed talks about the meaning behind the song Bee Girl, and how kids are exposed even more now, referring to Instagram as “Instaounce” and wanting them to be unfuckwithable, referring to the shirt again. During Just Breathe, Army Sgt. Kyle Johnson proposes to his girlfriend Amy, assisted by Ed, who changes the line to “he’s a lucky man.” Let Me Sleep is introduced as “a little number from a long time ago…it was written in Seattle the first winter I was there and it was snowing, which is rare for Seattle but the song was actually informed from experiences here, and growing up waiting on that fucking L train at 2:30 in the morning with 25 below windchill, thinking I was maybe not gonna make it through the night and wishing I had money for a cab.” Steve Gleason is brought out before Inside Job and delivers a message to the crowd, inspiring a powerful performance:

If you want my opinion, this stadium and this field are most sacred ground. Like all of you, I’m inspired and strengthened by the music of these guys. Mike and I have been friends for almost fifteen years and I’m grateful for the relationship that my family has with the Pearl Jam family. This next song is one of my all-time favorite songs ever. Everyone who has a heartbeat will face adversity but when you experience those moments, like the message in this song, please remember this, how we choose to feel is how we are and personally, I feel fucking awesome.

Before Comfortably Numb, Eddie thanks Steve and talks about being young and living in Chicago, saying:

“I was young and broke but I would get a bottle…and a cassette Walkman and headphones and sit there on the rocks and look at the water and look at the sky and look at the stars…I was looking in the sky and seeing like a whole world of possibilities, you know I was young with a whole world of possibilities but what were the options? You just didn’t know where any thread to any kind of future would be and this music was something that helped me and probably you too. It helped us imagine the possibility.”

Prior to All The Way, Ed waxes poetic about the Cubs, then a triumphant Baba O’Riley closes out the night.

Written by: Paul Wirt