Most Meaningful Performance
Team Gleason: Former New Orleans Saints player Steve Gleason, now confined to a wheelchair after battling ALS for several years, introduced the band Friday night. Guitarist Mike McCready donned a “Defend Team Gleason” T-shirt, while Eddie Vedder mentioned that Gleason wrote the setlist and was “a member of the band.” If Gleason really was responsible for those runs of “Jeremy” and the set-closing “Yellow Ledbetter”, the Voodoo crowd has a lot to thank him for.
Seattle love, ya’ll: After a comical Q&A where Vedder polled the crowd on how many people had been arrested in New Orleans (Vedder raised his hand) and how many thought they’d get arrested that night, the frontman suggested that fellow Seattle artist Macklemore (whom I spotted chatting with an exuberantly complimentary Vedder backstage after his show) would foot the bill for bail. Or, at least according to the Pearl Jam vocalist, he’d “give you 10 bucks to buy something at the thrift shop.” Here’s his number, according to Eddie: “206-938-840…” – one digit short, man!
Relevant politics: Vedder took time to bash BP for spilling oil into the nearby Gulf of Mexico and mentioned that “Severed Hand” was about the “rash of overdoses in the last six months … since they legalized marijuana in Seattle,” which, according to bassist Jeff Ament, is “obviously a work of fiction because that never fuckin’ happened before.”
And they covered two Mother Love Bone songs? Yep – another heavy dose of Seattle love that opened the encore, likely thanks again to Gleason, who hails from neighboring Spokane.