Take a trip back to the 1992 MTV Music Video Awards when Pearl Jam and Neil Young performed “Rockin’ in the Free World” live with three guitarists, drums and serious vocals by Eddie Vedder and Young. Pearl Jam had won video of the year for “Jeremy” and were set to perform when Young jumped onstage with his guitar and took the audience by storm.
In this moment on stage, many young fans probably wondered who Young was, clad with jeans, t-shirt and an American Indian necklace around his neck. It was later revealed that Vedder was a huge fan of Young and later toured a lot with him. Once the song started, it was apparent that Young’s amazing skills, together with Pearl Jam was a massive force to be reckoned with. On stage, were some serious strong guitar rifts live before an audience.
Young has a rich history of rock n’ roll, originally from Canada and at a young age suffered from polio. When he was 13, his parents split and his father left. Young stayed with his mother in Winnipeg and his brother moved in with his father. He started performing in Junior High School and pursued his music career, landing in Los Angeles where he joined Buffalo Springfield (1966-1968), Crazy Horse (1968-1969), Crosby, Stills, Nash and Young (1968-1970) and created various solo albums. Young performed at Woodstock and the Monterey Pop Festival. Some of his hits include classics like “Harvest Moon” (26.5 million views) “Heart of Gold” (77 million views) and “Old Man” (53.8 million views).
In September, Beck and Jenny Lewis performed “Harvest Moon” live. Choosing that particular cover seemed quite fitting as the harvest moon had just reached its peak a day earlier. Beck performed at the Ohana Festival in Dana Point.
Pearl Jam has been rated one of America’s best rock n’ roll bands of all time. Pearl Jam’s fanbase following has been compared to that of the Grateful Dead’s, with Rolling Stone magazine stating that Pearl Jam “toured incessantly and became one of rock’s great arena acts, attracting a fanatical, Grateful Dead-like cult following with marathon, true-believer shows in the vanishing spirit of Bruce Springsteen, the Who and U2.”
When asked about Pearl Jam’s legacy in a 2000 interview, Vedder said, “I think at some point along the way we began feeling we wanted to give people something to believe in because we all had bands that gave that to us when we needed something to believe in. That was the big challenge for us after the first record and the response to it. The goal immediately became how do we continue to be musicians and grow and survive in view of all this… The answers weren’t always easy, but I think we found a way.”
Farm Aid is a concert organized by Young, John Mellencamp, and Willie Nelson in 1985 as a way to raise money to help out struggling American farmers who were in danger of going under due to mortgage debt. The concert has continued on a semi-annual basis ever since and this year’s version promises to be another impressive affair. Young’s career spans decades filled with dozens of albums, shows and prolific work across the board.