Tag Archives: Pearl Jam

Pearl Jam Twenty – A Primer

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Are you ready for Pearl Jam Twenty? The documentary hits movie screens all over the world beginning September 20th. In some places, it’s a one night affair, while longer runs will be happening in select theaters. Look for a screening near you over at PJ20.com. The soundtrack curated by Cameron will also be released on September 20th. More details on the soundtrack are available here. Here’s one more peek at the trailer:



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Sep 16, 2011

Exclusive: Interview with PJ20 Book Author Jonathan Cohen – Part 2

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We conclude our interview with PJ20 author Jonathan Cohen as we discuss challenges, the design of the book and the music. We hope you enjoy it.

I know you had access to Cameron’s original interviews for the movie. Did you have a plan to make the book a companion to the movie or was it designed as a stand alone thing?

We never really had a discussion about it. Obviously, because Cameron gave us his interview transcripts, there is some overlap in dialogue between the film and book. He had so much good stuff that he couldn’t use in the movie. When he turned over his interviews, I indexed his transcripts and created subject headers and/or topics. For example, when talking about “Daughter”, I would find an Eddie quote, then I would grab a Stone quote. I would then be able to combine it with the stuff I already had. I really think that helped us make the best use of the stuff that was available to us.

Was there any topic or event in PJ’s history that was difficult to get a definitive answer on?

There are a few blank spots in the early period of the band’s concert chronology. We really wanted that nailed down. Is this actually their third show or fourth show together? We were able to get most of that sorted out.

Also, the story of how Eddie got the demo tape has been told in numerous forms and that became a bit of an untangling process. The version in circulation was pretty close, but not technically accurate.

How did the overall design or look of the book get decided?

All the credit for that goes to Regan Hagar for making everything make sense as you turn the pages. Jeff Ament and Eddie Vedder had a lot of input as well. I really like the collage look of the book a lot. Not a lot of the pictures have captions, but it makes almost more immersive as you might be reading about Pearl Jam and Neil Young jamming together and the picture of them together might be a few pages later.

What’s your favorite Pearl Jam album?

No Code because it’s a clear dividing line between the two eras of the band. I love how the introduction of drummer Jack Irons changed the band’s sound. They became groovy and just kind of loose. I just love the material on that record. It definitely threw some of the casual fans for a loop because it really didn’t sound like the previous three records. That record, is a flashpoint for the hard core fans. As the casual fans dropped off and the hard core stayed and got to say, “Yes, this is really my band and I’m going to follow them where ever they go creatively.”

How about a favorite concert memory?

Wow. That’s a tough thing to decide. I’m going to say the Santa Barbara Bowl show in the Fall of 2003. It was the first time that Chris Cornell sung “Hunger Strike” with the band in like eleven years. Jack Irons played at the show. It felt almost like the end of a certain era there too.

What about your favorite Pearl Jam songs?

I’m definitely more drawn to the rockers like “Last Exit”, Brain of J”, “Life Wasted”, “Habit”, “Mankind”, “Hail, Hail”. That’s my bread and butter!

What’s next for you?

Nothing planned as of now. Back to Late Night with Jimmy Fallon. It’s been a wonderful experience and I thank Pearl Jam and everyone immensely for being a part of this.

Special thanks to Jonathan Cohen and Nicole Vandenberg for helping with this interview. The PJ20 book is available now! It includes an introduction by Cameron, along with interviews with Bruce Springsteen, Neil Young, Neil Finn and Dave Grohl. It’s filled with a wonderful pictures and mementos from Pearl Jam’s twenty years and is published by Simon & Schuster.

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Sep 15, 2011

Exclusive: Interview with PJ20 Book Author Jonathan Cohen – Part 1

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Did you pick up your copy of the new PJ20 book yet? I had a chance to sit down with author Jonathan Cohen to discuss how the book came together in this exclusive interview.

You got know the band pretty well during your time at Billboard magazine, who contacted you and asked you to write the PJ20 book?

At the Philly shows in the Fall of 2009, the movie was just starting to be talked about within the band.  I think I may have mentioned to someone that I would love to help out with a book or anything regarding the project. Sure enough, a month later, I got a call from Nicole Vandenberg, the band’s longtime publicist, asking if I was interested in helping out with this project. I was beyond thrilled. It was something I had thought about maybe doing at some point down the road and was completely honored that asked me to be a part of it. But we had to move pretty fast, as we were closely approaching the date when all this stuff was happening…

You had a little over a year to create this book and balance your day job as the music booker at Late Night with Jimmy Fallon. How did you balance this?

I have to give much thanks to the hiatus schedule of Late Night with Jimmy Fallon. We were off 12 or 13 weeks in 2010 and that was the only way I was able to get this done on time. I blocked off every day that I wasn’t working on Fallon to write, do research or jump on the phone with somebody. That allowed us to compress the time period. Without it, there’s no way the book would have been done on time.

You’ve said that Eddie Vedder came up with a timeline concept for the book. But besides that, how did you wrap your arms around how to do put the band’s rich history into the book?

Initially, we really weren’t sure how we were going to do it. That coincided with Eddie’s idea to divide things up by year. That eliminated a ton of the stress, as we now had a set framework. We could now focus on the most important things to include in each year. That was a huge benefit to our focus and research. Without that, this book might have ended up double its final length.

Was there an early decision on the book length? Did that go out the window as you accumulated more and more material?

Yes. It’s to the credit of Simon & Schuster that we had the freedom to do something more robust than maybe what they initially intended. I think the book was initially supposed to be about 250 pages and wound up closer to 350 pages. We had so much good stuff and we didn’t want to make a lot of cuts. They were happy with the first draft and so we didn’t have to cut a lot out of there. The goal was to make the focus on the music, which sometimes gets lost in the overall conversation with Pearl Jam. It’s easy to forget that it’s actually the music that bonds people to them and is what has kept them going for 20 years.

It’s the Pearl Jam die hard fan that you’re trying to speak to, right?

That’s right. The book is definitely geared towards someone who has more than just a passing familiarity with the band. Along those lines, we also tried to go above and beyond to make sure that we had stuff that would entertain the longtime fan. By the same token, I think the book will appeal to people who just like music and it will be interesting for people to dig into that era and learn how the band made it through for the past 20 years.

Stay tuned tomorrow for Part 2 of our interview with Jonathan!

The PJ20 book is available now! It includes an introduction by Cameron, along with interviews with Bruce Springsteen, Neil Young, Neil Finn and Dave Grohl. It’s filled with a wonderful pictures and mementos from Pearl Jam’s twenty years and is published by Simon & Schuster.

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Sep 14, 2011

Pearl Jam Twenty Clip: Come Together

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PBS has debuted a new, exclusive clip of Pearl Jam Twenty. The scene focuses on the band’s formation with comments from all the parties involved. Pearl Jam Twenty has its world premiere tomorrow at the Toronto International Film Festival and then hits theaters beginning September 20th. It will air as part of PBS’s American Masters series on October 21st.

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Sep 9, 2011

CC and PJ on Jimmy Fallon: Check out the Clips!

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Cameron Crowe and Pearl Jam were on Late Night with Jimmy Fallon tonight. Cameron discussed Pearl Jam Twenty and Almost Famous and the band will performed a new song, “Ole”. Pearl Jam will be on again tomorrow night to perform as well, so make sure you stay up late or set your DVR for night #2!

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Sep 8, 2011

Recap: PJ20 Destination Weekend

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I’m back from the PJ20 Destination Weekend at the Alpine Valley Music Theatre  in East Troy, Wisconsin! While Cameron was unable to attend, I thought you might like to hear a bit about the event. I was able to secure 10 club (as a proud member of Pearl Jam’s fan club) tickets for both nights. The first great surprise was the extra goodies included with all 10 club tickets (PJ2o stickers, an early PJ Live show on CD and a Jeff Ament CD single from his forthcoming solo album).

The first night I was on the lawn and the second night I had pretty good reserved seats on “Stone Gossard’s” side of the stage. Simply put, I thought the shows were amazing. Night #1 was a shorter set (28 songs), but filled with a ton of rare B-sides including “In the Moonlight”, which had never been played before. Highlights for me included the emotional opener “Release”, “In My Tree” plus both Singles tracks “State of Love and Trust” and “Breath”. The 2nd night was a longer set (33 songs) as the band started their show 30 minutes earlier. The crowd emotion was unforgettable, the fans sang along loudly to every song and the band really fed off that energy all night. I’ve never seen the band having more fun and the set list was a great mix of hits (“The Fixer”, “Daughter/It’s OK”, “Alive”, “Even Flow”, “Given to Fly”) and rarities (“All Night”, “Habit”, “Satan’s Bed”, “No Way”). Both nights featured a Temple of the Dog reunion with Chris Cornell. Something I didn’t think that I’d ever see.

Many other PJ hand picked artists were on hand to celebrate and perform. I’m a huge Glen Hansard fan (If you haven’t seen the film Once, please see it immediately) so his sets both days were a huge highlight. Also thought Liam Finn and his sets were fun and energetic. Here’s a few pics I took (including a duet that Glen did with Eddie on the song “Falling Slowly”).


Lastly, I’ll leave you with a video from my highlight of Night #2 (via a fan at the show). An absolutely searing version of “Spin the Black Circle” which shook the 30,000+ fans in attendance. Watch Mike McCready doing circles around the stage for nearly the whole performance. The song was dedicated to the dying breed of independent record stores across the country. As Eddie put it, we need to keep watering them and keeping them alive.

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Sep 6, 2011

PJ20 “Daughter” Teaser

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As part of the 20 Days of Pearl Jam Countdown, we are pleased to present an exclusive clip from Pearl Jam Twenty. I’ll let Cameron set it up for you:

“A hint of promise – Stone and Eddie on the tour bus, working out a rough version of what would become “Daughter” (then “Brother”), the germ of which began the night before in the band’s Holiday Inn hotel room.  Thankfully George A. Webb III was there to capture this work-in-progress, a band milestone in the making.”

We hope you like it.

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Sep 4, 2011

Pearl Jam: Five Against The World

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As you know, it’s been a very active week with all the PJ20 news. I thought it might be a good time to revisit Cameron’s Rolling Stone cover story on the band from October, 1993 entitled “Five Against The World. The article focuses on the band’s turbulent year dealing with sudden fame, the recording of their 2nd album Vs. and much more.

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Jul 29, 2011

David Crosby: Remember My Name-Out Now on DVD/Blu-ray & Digital!

  • Almost Famous- Showtime,Amazon
  • David Crosby- Starz
  • E-Town- Amazon
  • Fast Times- Starz
  • Jerry Maguire- Netflix
  • Say Anything...- Amazon,Starz
  • Singles- Vudu
  • Vanilla Sky- Netflix
  • We Bought A Zoo- Amazon