Eddie Vedder Was ‘Rockin’ in the Free World’ at a Chicago Cubs Benefit Concert This Weekend
With the team's GM and Jimmy Chamberlin of the Smashing Pumpkins
The list of places Pearl Jam frontman Eddie Vedder is likely to show up unannounced keeps getting longer, and we can now add “professional baseball benefit concerts” to a list that already includes high schools, Twin Peaks, and somebody’s backyard with the Who. Chicago Cubs general manager Theo Epstein operates a foundation called Foundation to Be Named Later, which hosted a fundraising event called Hot Stove Cool Music on Friday. Vedder wasn’t on the lineup this time (he headlined last year), but he popped up to perform songs including “Better Man,” “Watch Outside,” and “Corduroy.”
According to Rolling Stone, Vedder’s cover of Neil Young’s “Rockin’ in the Free World” featured guest performances by Epstein, Smashing Pumpkins drummer Jimmy Chamberlin, and former New York Yankee/current jazz guitarist Bernie Williams. Cubs manager Joe Maddon played tambourine. The evening also included sets by Liz Phair and JC Brooks & the Uptown Sound.
Vedder, a native of nearby Evanston, Illinois, is such a stalwart Cubs fan that he wrote his own fight song, which he also performed on Friday. See fan-shot footage of Vedder’s latest performance, a set list, and a news segment on the event from Chicago’s WGN-TV below.