See Pearl Jam Back Jay-Z on a Scorching ’99 Problems’

Jay-Z and Pearl Jam / Photo by Kevin Mazur/WireImage

At the tail end of their two-hour, festival-closing set Sunday night at Jay-Z’s Made In America get-together, Pearl Jam launched into what set list-studying Ten Club nerds and casual fans would call an unlikely number: “W.M.A.,” a saturnine, long-forgotten mid-record cut from 1993’s Vs. that the Seattle alt-rock survivors usually sneak into their set as a means for launching into a cover, or stretching its tribal rhythms into an extended jam perfect for snippets of other artists’ poetry. The track, which was inspired by events that took place outside the studio during the recording process, touches on themes of racism — “W.M.A.” is Vedder for “White Male American” — which made it the perfect backdrop for a similarly minded surprise guest appearance on Sunday from the festival’s curator. With a Brooklyn Nets cap atop his head, Jay-Z switched spots with Vedder to perform a hefty, tight-fisted rendition of “99 Problems” with Peej as his backing band. See it below:


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