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Archive for September, 2011

TOE-JAM FOOTBALL

Thursday, September 29th, 2011

Fiday at 3pm the Weekend Gone Wild begins on Rock 106 and the theme will be Famous Firsts.

Today on the show we played Come Together by the Beatles which is famously known as the first song to reference ‘toe-jam football.’ It may very well be the last song that references ‘-toe-jam football’ but that’s beside the point.

Anyhow, it prompted the question on the show today, what IS toe-jam football?

Before ‘pig-skin’ footballs were made, people would invite their friends out to a field. They would then remove their shoes and socks and scrounge up all the toe jam they could, smoosh it together and shape into the familiar football shape.

The CFL played with toe-jam football for the first 3 years of its existence. That’s when someone invented something better: belly button footballs.

Each player would excavate the lint from their belly buttons, smoosh it together and once again shape it into the familiar football shape. They were far less smelly than toe-jam footballs, though equally as disgusting. Also, games could only be played in windless games because any breeze would wisk a belly lint football away.

The CFL would later go on to try other footballs made of ear wax and eye crud before eventually settling for the pigskin football. But it all began with toe-jam.

Or, according to the internet, toe-jam football means bare-foot soccer. But who are you gonna believe, me or the internet?

Happy weekend gone wild.

PEARL JAM setlist, highlights and lowlight.

Thursday, September 22nd, 2011

Eddie, Jeff, Stone, Mike, Matt and Boom gave a great Saddledome crowd 2 and half hours of classics, album cuts and cover tunes Wednesday night.

Highlights: the crowd.

One fan tossed up a Flames jersey to Eddie with ‘Vedder’ on the back and the #10 (in salute of the bands debut album). That’s a pricy gift. Nicely done.

Another fan tossed up a mask and on that mask was Gene Simmons classic face paint design for KISS. Later in the show, bassist Jeff Ament put it on, rocked out and sang back ups vocals with it. Awesome.

A 3rd fan who has been traveling at least a few shows across Canada with the band was holding up a sign requesting a b-side (Parachutes). Eddie brought the fan up on stage and said, “I need help remembering the lyrics,” and had the fan sit by the mic and hold the lyric cheat-sheet throughout the tune. Eddie even let the fan have a gulp from his bottle of wine.

The music. I remember buying the Ten album on cassette for $5 in Vancouver a couple months before the band catapulted into immediate stardom. I’ve been a fan ever since. While I dig hearing the hits just to hear/see the crowd lose their mind, it’s the album cuts that really get me charged and thankfully PJ plays a lot of ‘em in every show.

Lowlight: only 1; a tribute to R.E.M.

With news breaking the morning of the show that R.E.M. had disbanded after 31 years together, Eddie expressed PJ’s sadness and paid tribute by covering a R.E.M. song (It Happened Today).

This would be considered a major highlight for a lot of people including my friend Dawn who is a huge R.E.M. fan. Not me. I commend the band for doing the tribute.  It makes me recall Jimi Hendrix doing a similar gesture back in ’69 when the supergroup Cream split.  Jimi’s tribute became my favorite performance of his.  With that said, I didn’t pay $$$ to hear a Michael Stipe song. I would have preferred the worst Pearl Jam song in the catalogue over that buzz kill. Again, that’s just me. Oh, and my wife felt the same as well. But the other 27 songs rocked.

The setlist =

Release
Go *FAVE OF THE NIGHT
Last Exit
Given to Fly
Lukin
Insignificance
Big Wave
Unthought Known
Even Flow
Deep *STELLAR (from the 1st album & they don’t play it often)
Light Years
Daughter
It Happened today (R.E.M. cover)
Setting Forth
Corduroy *WICKED
Brain of J *AWESOME
Alive

ENCORE 1:
Just Breathe
Parachutes (fan request)
Rats (Eddie dedicated it to Alberta for being rat-free)
The Fixer
Rearviewmirror *LOVED IT

ENCORE 2:
Jeremy
Crazy Mary (Victoria Williams cover) *INCREDIBLE (McCready and Boom trading off solos b/n guitar and keys respectively)
Search and Destroy (Iggy and the Stooges cover w/ 2 members of Mud Honey)

LIGHTS ON:
F’n Up (Neil Young cover)
Yellow Ledbetter

Final thoughts: there will always be songs you wish they had played simply because they have so many songs to choose from. I would have loved Oceans, Black, Indifference, State of Love and Trust, Do the Evolution, and so on and so on and so on. The trick is to not focus on what they didn’t jam, and appreciate your favorites that they did jam. That’s Pearl Jam.

Onward to Edmonton.