Episode 133: Washington DC – 6/22/2008
About the Episode
Episode Release Date: June 9th, 2021
2008 was an interesting year for Pearl Jam. Touring in between their Self-Titled and Backspacer releases, they were given the flexibility to experiment in their setlists moreso then they had in the past. On the 13-show east coast tour, there were songs that had been almost unfathomable to hear at a Pearl Jam show prior. Who You Are, All Night, a full version of W.M.A. and a solidified set opening role for Hard To Imagine are just some of the exciting additions brought into the fold in 2008. At the Washington DC show that we cover in this episode, we’ll hear some of those unique additions as well as a few twists and turns that made this setlist memorable. We’re all familiar with the “man” trilogy where the songs Nothingman, Leatherman and Better Man are played in sequence, that’s a frequent enough occurrence in setlists. The band pulled out not one, but TWO new trilogy series combining songs with the word “I” and the word “you”. These are fun inclusions that you’ll never see in a setlist outside of this unpredictable 2008 tour.
As mentioned above, one of the songs that made a huge impact in 2008 was Hard To Imagine. After using it as an opener once in Halifax on the 2005 tour, they hadn’t gone back to it in the role since then. But the song would be played five times in 2008, all as the opener, solidifying its place among the pantheon of special opening songs.