Pearl Jam Biography

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Pearl JamPearl Jam is considered as one of the most influential alternative bands ever to come out of the 1990’s and revolutionized rock music the way it is being heard today.

Pearl Jam was one of the pioneering bands of the grunge movement in the early 90’s alongside Alice in Chains, Nirvana and Soundgarden.

Not only were they able to help grunge rock gain mainstream acceptance, they were also able to achieve extensive commercial success along the way, selling over 31 million records in the U.S. alone. Pearl Jam is also one of the few bands to lead the alternative rock movement of the 90’s that still remain active today.

Pearl Jam was founded in 1990, with front man Eddie Vedder on vocals, Jeff Ament on bass guitar, Stone Gossard on rhythm guitar and Dave Krusen on drums.

They first went with the band name Mookie Blaylock which was taken from the actual name of a former NBA player. They eventually changed their name to Pearl Jam when trademark concerns about using an athlete’s full name arose.

Their debut album, "Ten" (with reference to Mookie Blaylock’s jersey number) was released on August 27, 1991. The album contained eleven tracks which produced four hit songs, namely, "Even Flow", "Alive", "Jeremy", and "Black".

These songs dealt with such dark themes as depression, suicide, loneliness, and murder which became sort of a trademark with Pearl Jam’s distinctive sound and Vedder’s deep, emotive voice.

The video for the song "Jeremy" was heavily played on MTV and eventually became a very huge hit. The album stayed on the Billboard charts for an incredible run of more than two years and has gone on to become one of the biggest-selling rock albums ever, going an amazing 12x platinum.

Pearl Jam released their second album "Vs." on October 19, 1993 as the widely anticipated follow-up to their debut album. "Vs." eventually set a record for the most copies sold in the first week of its release with over 950,000 units. The album has since gone 7x platinum. The "Vs." album included the hit songs "Animal", "Daughter’, "Dissident", and "Go".

Their song "Daughter" was able to reach the top spot on both the Billboard Modern Rock and Mainstream Rock charts. On the latter, it was able to stay a total of eight weeks on the top spot, thereby becoming one of Pearl Jam’s most successful songs.

On November 22, 1994, Pearl Jam’s came up with a third album release which was titled "Vitalogy". It was released first as a classic vinyl record and then two weeks later, made available in CD and cassette form. The CD of the album became the second-fastest-selling album in music history.

It sold for an amazing 877,000 plus units in its first week run in the market. "Vitalogy" eventually was able to achieve a quintuple-platinum status, continuing Pearl Jam’s run as a commercial rock n’ roll success.

Many of the songs on the album appear to be based around the pressures of fame. The song "Spin the Black Circle", was able to win for the band a Grammy Award in 1996 for Best Hard Rock Performance.

"Vitalogy" also included the hits "Better Man" which reached number two on the Billboard Modern Rock chart and the top spot on the Billboard Mainstream Rock chart for a total of eight weeks.

Their continued success on both the charts and album sales as well as on the hearts of their legions of fans made Pearl Jam one of the greatest bands to come out in the 90’s. It was their appeal as one of the pioneering bands of the alternative rock era in the 90’s that etched their name into the minds of the many people.

Their endearing and emotionally deep and thoughtful messages coupled with their own distinctive sound made them become one of the most endearing modern rock icons of this era.

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