the

The Truth About Pearl Jam's Eddie Vedder

music legend Eddie Vedder is still going

strong as the frontman of Pearl Jam he's

become one of the most prominent rock

icons of his era and while he's never

fallen into the throes of addiction he's

nevertheless faced numerous challenges

in his life Vetter was born Edward Lewis

Severson the third on December 23rd 1964

his life got off to a rough start as his

parents Karen and Edward divorced in

1965 and his mother remarried a man

named Peter Moeller for much of vetters

early years he was led to believe that

his stepfather was his real dad and he

went by the name Eddie Muller when he

finally found out that he'd been lied to

the truth hit him hard Vetter later told

the Los Angeles Times that his childhood

wasn't particularly happy the

environment was tense and by age 15 he'd

already moved out into his own apartment

he worked at a drugstore and struggled

to keep up in school he resented his

peers for the privileges they took for

granted such as going to prom or having

parents who could give them a car as a

gift for the most part he felt alone as

he put it I'd fall asleep in class and

they've lecture me about the reality of

their classroom I said one day you want

to see my reality I opened up my

backpack to where you usually keep your

pencils that's where I kept my bills

electric bills rent that was my reality

soon enough it was too much to balance

and he dropped out of school by the time

adolescence came along you know I didn't

I didn't really trust any any adults

throughout all his early struggles the

one thing that consistently kept Vetter

going was his passion for music a

pivotal influence was the whose 1971

album whose next which was introduced to

him by a babysitter by age 12 he talked

his family into giving him a guitar and

from then on music became as number one

hobby in 1984 Vetter landed in

California guitar in hand and decided to

make a go at a music career he paid the

bills by working as a hotel security

guard while he fostered his talent by

joining local bands getting past shyness

was something of a struggle on stage he

actually wore a mask to his early

performances that consisted of goggles

that had been painted over to block out

the audience eventually though he grew

more confident soon enough that are

connected to some former members of the

band Mother Love Bone who were so

impressed with his song alive that they

to form a band with him he followed them

to Seattle and Pearl Jam was born Pearl

Jam originally called themselves Mookie

Blaylock after their favorite NBA player

that might be a cool name for a person

but it's a terrible name for a band

unless all their songs are about hoops

in any case they soon rechristened

themselves Pearl Jam in 1991 fetter told

Rolling Stone a rather fascinating

origin story behind the name evidently

his great-grandmother was named pearl

and she used hallucinogenic ingredients

like peyote to produce the world's

trivias preserves in other words it was

pearls jam that's a pretty cool story

but it also turns out that it's a rather

tall tale in 2006 veteran mitad -

Rolling Stone that while his

great-grandmother was indeed named pearl

the whole hallucinogenic jam thing was

in his words total bulk the truth is

that Pearl was something that Pearl Jam

bassist Jeff Ament randomly came up with

at a restaurant in Jam refers to musical

jams throughout his career Vetter has

been an outspoken advocate for social

causes both on and off the stage he

often railed against the George W Bush

administration and causes like the

rights of death row inmates the

treatment of animals and a woman's right

to choose are all close to his heart

in 2006 Pearl Jam founded the Vitalogy

Foundation a nonprofit organization that

supports community health education and

more veter is also the co-founder of the

Evie research partnership which helps

fund treatments for childhood skin

disorders in fact Pearl Jam has stated

that they donate $2 from every ticket

sold at all their shows to cause us

supported by their foundation adversity

you know that's that's where heroes come

from and they come in all shapes and

sizes obviously even relatively small

matters don't escape Fedders attention

as demonstrated in 2016 when he donated

ten thousand dollars to a poorer

Maryland family facing eviction Vetter

seems like someone who always puts his

money where his mouth is if he believes

in a cause he dedicates himself to it

one of his biggest success stories was

his support of the West Memphis Three a

trio of teenagers who were wrongly

convicted of killing three other boys in

West Memphis Arkansas as a fierce critic

of the United States prison system

Vetter discovered that they'd been in

prison

after a poorly run investigation in 1993

we are in a good spot now and we've got

evidence even in the last two three

years that we believe will exonerate

these kids he performed benefit concerts

for them which helped raise awareness

for their plight when new forensic

evidence was brought to light in 2011

they were released one of the biggest

ways that better has struggled with fame

is the conflict between his desire to

connect with his fans and his need to

maintain a safe distance in the

beginning of Pearl Jam's explosion into

the mainstream he devoted himself to his

followers remembering his own loneliness

as a youth he would spend hours talking

to fans after shows he would converse

with hundreds of people or even give out

his own personal telephone number so

they could talk to him if they needed

help when fans wrote in letters asking

what his lyrics meant he always wrote

back his dedication was sincere and kind

but it could also lead him to being

overwhelmed by his need to not let

anyone down the problems escalated when

one fan turned into a stalker this

particular woman held the delusional

belief that Vetter was the reincarnation

of Jesus Christ and that he'd also

fathered her two sons she eventually

drove her car through the wall of

vetters house almost killing herself

because of this incident

Beth Liebling fetters wife at the time

had new fences put up around their house

and ordered Pearl Jam's record company

to help pay for round-the-clock security

Vetter and Beth Liebling first met up

and started dating when they were

teenagers they stayed together as better

became the frontman of Pearl Jam and

Liebling who went by the stage name say

d7 co-founded the experimental band

hovercraft they got married in 1994 but

in 2000 their relationship ended in

divorce as fetter told Rolling Stone the

split left him in a bad place

emotionally

Liebling disappeared from the public eye

for a while but in 2019 she announced to

come back with a new band named

teleportal

as for Vetter he was lucky enough to

discover new and lasting love right

around the corner as he eventually met a

model named Jill McCormack they got

married in Hawaii in 2010 and they've

remained together ever since

wedding attendees included Sean Penn and

Jack Johnson Vetter and McCormick's

family has grown over the years as

they've raised two daughters named

Olivia and Harper vetters reputation

nice guy is fairly widespread even among

those who aren't fans of Pearl Jam and

surely enough he's proven to be someone

who remembers those who have helped him

out in the past one notable incident

happened in 2001 when Vetter and five

other people in saline in Hawaii only to

have their canoe get overturned while

half of the group were able to get back

aboard after a broken mast righted the

boat

their paddles were lost before Vetter

and two others could climb back on a

powerful wind pushed the boat too far

away luckily a local man named Keith

Baxter and his daughter Ashley happened

to be nearby

Ashley heard the stranded groups voices

and the Baxters were able to save their

lives Vetter never forgot this

in 2013 he told the story at a concert

dedicated future days to Ashley and

brought her out before the crowd three

years later he found out that Keith

Baxter had been in a terrible boating

accident that left his leg nearly

severed he was unable to afford the

medical treatments needed to save him

from infection the Baxters had already

raised $70,000 on GoFundMe so Pearl Jam

matched that number with an additional

70 thousand dollars much of the 90s

grunge music came from a place of deep

personal pain for many artists the

combination of depression and sudden

overwhelming fame led to drug abuse Kurt

Cobain struggle with heroin remains one

of the most notable tragic examples his

death had better particularly hard who

said at the time when I first found out

I was in a hotel room in Washington DC

and I just tore the place to shreds then

I just kind of sat in the rubble which

somehow felt right like my world at the

moment but Vetter himself never really

fit into this scene that so many of his

peers were a part of that isn't to say

that he had an easier time than others

as he has struggled with depression but

hard drugs simply weren't something he

ever really turned to though heroin use

was rampant among the music community at

the time Pearl Jam stopped doing drugs

pretty early on as for Vetter

specifically he swore off these

substances when he was a teenager that

doesn't mean he's a total straightedge

as he's admitted to drinking about as

much as the average person does but

beyond that he's never really had any

notable problems with addiction or

substance abuse it's not easy keeping a

band together music groups tend to be

chaotic keeping harmony in the

which group of people can get stressful

and those stresses only escalate when

the members are passionate artists who

have their own idea about what the

band's meaning is it's no wonder that so

many major bands in music history have

had tragic breakup stories whether it's

the Beatles parting ways sting leaving

the police or the Gallagher brothers of

Oasis constantly feuding don't like Asia

alone did you watch him on here no

Courtenay watches you

oh he's obsessed Pearl Jam though are

different and this was demonstrated when

the band was inducted into the Rock and

Roll Hall of Fame in 2017 longtime

drummer Matt Cameron was included in the

induction alongside veteran ement lead

guitarist Mike McCready and rhythm

guitarist Stone Gossard so was drummer

Dave cruising who worked on the band's

debut album ten veteran his band mates

didn't want any other former drummers to

feel left out

so they made it a point to publicly

invite to the induction ceremony Dave

Abers ease Matt Chamberlain and Jack

irons the other three drummers from the

band's history if there's one thing that

Eddie Vedder is besides a musician and

an activist it's a thrill seeker he's

been known to do things like climb up

girders and jump off cliffs into the sea

which earned him the nickname of crazy

Eddie from the Red Hot Chili Peppers

perhaps his favorite thrill of all

though is to be out in the ocean beneath

the Sun riding a nice wave that's right

Eddie Vedder is a surfing fanatic that

obsession becomes increasingly clear the

more you study Pearl Jam's song titles

and lyrics which often involve water

metaphors

even flow and amongst the waves are a

couple of unmissable examples surfing

references also frequently peper betters

dialogue as in a 1991 billboard

interview in which he said things like

I'm riding the wave of this music into

the shoreline which is the audience

better describes this hobby as a quote

amazing bond with nature in fact his

surfing enthusiasm goes so far that in

2019 it was announced he would appear on

surfing rockers a new show featuring

musicians whose careers and music were

influenced by the board after all the

struggles he's been through in his life

well glad he's found a way to be at

peace my life's been really quite full

life I think of is like the best life

I've ever lived check out one of our

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[Music]