Sunday, August 1, 2010

Song Of The Week: 8/1/10

Song: "Immortality"

Artist: Pearl Jam

Album: "July 2, 03 #62 Mansfield" North America 2003 Bootleg

Year: 2003

Though Pearl Jam frontman Eddie Vedder claims that "Immortality" was not written about the Kurt Cobain suicide, there are many things in the song that seem to be just about that. Perhaps this is true because Eddie himself has stated that the song is more about understanding the pressures on someone who is on a parallel train. So the song may be more autobiographical yet indirectly linked to Cobain. This rings especially true in that both Vedder and Cobain rode that shaky train to superstardom and both had to deal with the enormity of success and all the dangers and pitfalls of all of the sudden being cast as the voice of a generation, without really wanting the responsiblity of being that. It was hard for them to remain true to who they were at that time and not be dangled about like a puppet on a string. There were only so many things they could do. They could have walked away from it all and seclude themselves from the world. They could pull back and take control of their lives, their band, and their direction, as Pearl Jam did. Suicide was the final end to Cobain and Nirvana. Who knows if Cobain was alive today if Nirvana could have sustained their legendary status. A lot of times, music fans and the industry tends to move on to the next big thing. Perhaps, Nirvana would have been left behind, much like bands like Pearl Jam have been in the music world today. By that tragic event in 1994, Cobain and the music of Nirvana was immortalized. "Immortality" was originally released on Pearl Jam's 1994 "Vitalogy" album. At the height of the band's popularity, "Vitalogy" was the second fastest selling album of all time, only behind Pearl Jam's "VS" album. This version I chose was recorded live in 2003 from the Tweeter Center in Mansfield, MA. Always one of my PJ highlights, the three dates the band played in Mansfield, MA on the 2003 tour featured the band only repeating one song twice, which was "Yellow Ledbetter". For the hardcore Jammer, these shows were a dream come true, and besides possibly the 10 year anniversary show in Las Vegas, these were my favorite concerts which I attended by the band. Currently, Pearl Jam just finished up touring in support of their latest release, "Backspacer", and are taking some time off to recharge the batteries.

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