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Eddie Vedder

Eddie VedderAKA Edward Louis Severson III

Born: 23-Dec-1964
Birthplace: Evanston, IL

Gender: Male
Religion: Atheist
Race or Ethnicity: White
Sexual orientation: Straight
Occupation: Singer

Nationality: United States
Executive summary: Lead singer, Pearl Jam

Edward Louis Severson III entered the world in the Chicago suburb of Evanston, where he was greeted right away with a convoluted family life. Raised to believe that his mother's second husband was his biological father, his actual father (known to him only as a family friend) died of multiple sclerosis before the fact of his parentage was revealed. His adoptive father separated from the family when Eddie was in his early teens, adding more to his emotional troubles and compelling him to find refuge in drugs and, more constructively, an extensive record collection. While in high school he became active in local garage bands, eventually dividing his time between Chicago and San Diego in order to paricipate in both music scenes. He formed his first band, Bad Radio, during this period, but, due to an inability to expand beyond a regional audience, the project was later dissolved.

Through his friend and sometime Red Hot Chili Peppers drummer Jack Irons, Vedder (who been using his mother's maiden name since learning about his real father) was exposed to a demo tape put together by guitarists Stone Gossard and Jeff Ament, both formerly of the band Mother Love Bone. Vedder dubbed his vocals over the instrumental tracks and sent it to the duo in Seattle; they were impressed enough with the results that they immediately invited the singer to fly out for a visit. The three individuals meshed well on a personal level, and within days Vedder had made a permanent move to Seattle to begin work on the new band in earnest. Initially, they performed as Mookie Blaylock, the name of a favorite basketball player; before any records had been released, however, this was altered to Pearl Jam, in honor of an aunt's peyote-laced preserves. Blaylock was still given a nod in the title chosen for their debut album: Ten (1991) being the ball player's jersey number. Several months before work on this album started, a short-lived project was undertaken with members of Soundgarden under the name Temple of the Dog, resulting in a single eponymous record at the end of 1990.

Following the release of Ten, Pearl Jam immediately achieved enormous popularity, being one of several bands (Soundgarden, Nirvana, and Alice in Chains amongst them) to benefit from the hype surrounding the initial Seattle "grunge" explosion. In particular, the song Jeremy -- whose subject matter centered around a boy who commits suicide in front of his classmates -- gained Vedder and the band both notoriety and a devout fan base amongst alienated teens. The next two albums, Vs. (1993) and Vitalogy (1994) were met with equal success, but by this time a backlash against the "grunge hype" was becoming evident. Around the release of Vitalogy, the band's press coverage was distracted away from its music to concentrate instead on a conflict with (and subsequent law suit against) the ubiquitous ticket vendor/extortion racket Ticketmaster; sadly, the resolution to this conflict failed to bring about much improvement in the situation. With the next release, No Code, a deliberate move away from a commercial sound was made, resulting in a corresponding drop in sales. 1998's Yield made a return to a more accessible style more in keeping with the band's earlier records.

Outside of his work in Pearl Jam, Vedder has become active in political circles, campaigning for Ralph Nader and the Green Party in the 2000 presidential election, as well as participating in benefit events for Tibetan independence and the West Memphis 3 (within the context of the band, he had made earlier appearances at benefits for the Bridge School project and the Surfrider Foundation). Several collaboratons with some of his musical influences have also taken place over the years, with vocal contributions being made to Neil Young's Mirrorball in 1995, Pete Townshend's 1999 Maryville Academy benefit and 2004 Magic Bus concert, and The Who's 2003 performance at the Royal Albert Hall. A less predictable pairing was made with Pakistani legend Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan for the soundtrack of Tim Robbins' 1996 film Dead Man Walking. Pearl Jam has continued to remain both active and popular, although its recorded output during the 00s has been limited to Binaural (2000), Riot Act (2002) and the rarities collection Lost Dogs (2003). A separation from their label Epic Records was made in 2003, and the band has yet to decide whether to play host to yet another corporate parasite.

Father: Peter Mueller (adoptive father)
Mother: Karen Lee Vedder
Father: Ed Severson, Jr. (biological father, d. multiple sclerosis)
Brother: Chris Mueller (half-brother)
Wife: Beth Liebling (bass player, m. 3-Jun-1994, div. Sep-2000)
Wife: Jill McCormick (b. circa 1978, m. 18-Sep-2010, two daughters)
Daughter: Olivia Vedder (b. 11-Jun-2004)
Daughter: Harper Moon Margaret Vedder (b. 23-Sep-2008)

    Temple of the Dog Vocalist (1990)
    Pearl Jam Vocalist, Guitarist (1990-)
    Mike Watt Vocalist, Guitarist (1995)
    Neil Young Vocalist (1995)
    Pete Townshend Vocalist (1999, 2004)
    Neil Finn Guitarist, Vocalist (2002)
    America Coming Together
    Nader 2000
    Disturbing the Peace Arrested 18-Nov-1993 in New Orleans
    Drunk in Public Arrested 18-Nov-1993 in New Orleans
    Risk Factors: Vegetarian, Smoking

    12-12-12 (1-Nov-2013) · Himself
    Made in America (5-Sep-2013) · Himself
    West of Memphis (21-Jan-2012) · Himself
    Paradise Lost 3: Purgatory (11-Sep-2011) · Himself
    Pearl Jam Twenty (10-Sep-2011) · Himself
    Conan O'Brien Can't Stop (13-Mar-2011) · Himself
    Walk Hard: The Dewey Cox Story (21-Dec-2007) · Himself
    Slacker Uprising (27-Sep-2007) · Himself
    Amazing Journey: The Story of The Who (14-Sep-2007) · Himself
    Pearl Jam: Live at the Garden (11-Nov-2003) · Himself
    End of the Century: The Story of the Ramones (19-Jan-2003) · Himself
    Last Party 2000 (2-Nov-2001) · Himself
    America: A Tribute to Heroes (21-Sep-2001) · Himself
    Pearl Jam: Touring Band 2000 (1-May-2001) · Himself
    Pearl Jam: Single Video Theory (4-Aug-1998) · Himself
    Hype! (Jan-1996) · Himself

Appears on the cover of:
Time, 25-Oct-1993, DETAILS: All The Rage: Angry young rockers like PEARL JAM give voice to the passions and fears of a generation

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