Sunday, April 13, 2008

Eddie Vedder at the Wiltern

Yesterday I met a friend of mine from work, Jeremy, out to see Eddie Vedder on his short West Coast only April Fool's Tour. I wasn't sure what to expect, I had peeked at a setlist from a previous night so I knew he would be playing material from the Into The Wild soundtrack and I knew a handful of songs he tends to play solo would be part of the set. But what I didn't expect was Eddie solo with an acoustic guitar (or ukulele, or little guitar, electric guitar etc...) for close to 2 1/2 hours.

I hate to say it but the rest of Pearl Jam wasn't missed. Eddie entertained, sounded fantastic vocally, told jokes and stories between songs, played a little improv, and even had to give a surprise acceptance speech to accept his Golden Globe Award for Into The Wild in person.

Our tickets were through the 10c fan club and once again the PJ fanclub didn't disappoint. We were dead center 6 rows off the floor. We were on the second level off the floor so our seats were elevated above the section in front of us so we had no trouble seeing. And Eddie even made the crowd sit and said since he was playing a theater setting he wanted everyone to sit back and enjoy.

A very entertaining show. And even the opening act Liam Finn was a pleasant surprise with his unique and entertaining set. Liam's set consisted of him with a female vocalist setting up loops on guitars and vocals and jumping between frenetic drums and guitar from song to song, all in the context of a singer songwriter motif with a little angst.

Eddie's performance of Arc at the end of the first encore was amazing. He built up layers of vocals performing one vocal at a time with layer upon layer before wailing a vocal solo on top of the foundation he built. After this I was convinced the show was over. Such a unique and perfect ending. The curtains dropped and Eddie graciously gave what appeared to be his final bow.

When he came back out he played a couple of songs solo and finished the show with a standing room only performance of the uplifting song Hard Sun.

Other highlights from the set included Man Of The Hour, this song grabs me in an emotional way every time, Soon Forget (w/ the uke), the anti-war song No More, and the crowd sing-a-longs with The Beatles' Dylan-esque You've Got To Hide Your Love Away, and Tom Petty's I Won't Back Down.

Eddie Vedder April Fool's Tour

April 12, 2008 Wiltern Theatre, Los Angeles, California, U.S.A.

Support: Liam Finn (with Eliza Jane Barnes)

Main Set: Tuolumne (Intro Music), Walking The Cow, Around The Bend, I Am Mine, Dead Man Walking, (God Is In Control*) (Limit Yourself**) / Masters Of War, I'm Open, Man Of The Hour, Setting Forth, Guaranteed, No Ceiling, (with Golden Globe Acceptance and Speech), Far Behind, Rise, Millworker, Soon Forget, Broken Heart, Driftin’, You’ve Got To Hide Your Love Away, Trouble, If You Want To Sing Out, Sing Out, I Won't Back Down, Forever Young, Porch

Encore 1: Society (with Liam Finn), Throw Your Arms Around Me (with Liam Finn), No More, Arc

Encore 2: Growin' Up, Lukin, Hard Sun (with Liam Finn and Eliza Jane Barnes)

* from a TV commercial
** improv

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