Happy Birthday Eddie Vedder: Relive the Pearl Jam Rocker’s Best Moments

by Emily Morgan

As a way to celebrate Eddie Vedder’s 56th year on Earth, Outsider is taking a look back at some of the rock icon’s best moments. 

Throughout the years, The Pearl Jam frontman has delivered some of the best moments in rock-n-roll history, so it’s only fair we celebrate him on his birthday.

“Black” MTV Unplugged (1992)

On March 16, 1992, three days after the final date on their debut European tour, Pearl Jam headed to New York to tape a midnight performance of MTV Unplugged.

MTV aired the performance on May 13, 1992, and the result was an instant classic. As Vedder lead the band, they successfully proved themselves to be dynamic songwriters and musicians highlighted by their nuanced and emotional acoustic performance.

The Doors and Eddie Vedder “Light My Fire” (1993)

No one can ever replace Jim Morrison. However, Morrison’s spirit lives on with Vedder’s rendition of “Light My Fire.” During the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame induction ceremony, Vedder covered their 1967 hit. As usual, Vedder gives his all during the performance when he paid tribute to the rock legend.

The Rolling Stones and Eddie Vedder “Wild Horses” (2005)

Fans would have to pick their jaws off the floor when two famous frontmen shared the stage. In 2005, Mick Jagger and Eddie Vedder performed alongside each other. As Vedder takes the stage, he gets a bump of encouragement from Keith Richards before the rock-n-roll magic begins. Watch as the two legends perform one of the most iconic songs made famous by The Rolling Stones.

“Not For You” (2000)

Pearl Jam’s defiance is showcased in “Not For You.” Vedder dedicates the song to anyone who meddles with music’s integrity. More importantly, the song goes out to those who profited from music. The song peaked at No. 12 on the Mainstream Rock Songs chart.

“Do The Evolution” (1998)

“A riff on human arrogance,” the video for “Do The Evolution” was Pearl Jam’s first since “Jeremy.” In a 1998 interview, Vedder said the song is about “someone drunk with technology, who thinks they’re the controlling living being on this planet.” It peaked at No. 33 on the “Alternative Songs” chart.

“Jeremy” (1992)

Inspired by a story Vedder read about a student who killed himself during class, it became a huge hit. However, the track was overshadowed by its controversial music video. As a result, the band took home “Best Video of the Year” at the 1993 MTV VMAs.

The popularity of the video led Pearl Jam to put a hiatus on making music videos. There’s no denying the emotion that culminates with Vedder’s signature vocals, “try to forget this, try to erase this, from the blackboard.” The song peaked at No. 5 on the “Mainstream Rock Songs” chart.