By Doug Hare EBS Staff
BIG SKY – The legendary Seattle band Pearl Jam will play at the University of Montana’s Washington-Grizzly Stadium on Aug. 13, as the third concert of a seven-part summer tour dubbed “The Home Shows” and “The Away Shows.”
The first “Away Show” performance will mark the seventh time that Pearl Jam has played at the University of Montana, and their first appearance in Missoula since 2012. Other “Away Shows” include two nights each at Chicago’s Wrigley Field and Boston’s Fenway Park.
Pearl Jam has connections to the Treasure State—bassist Jeff Ament grew up in Big Sandy, Montana, and played basketball for the Montana Grizzlies before moving to Seattle. Ament remains a part-time Missoula resident and has donated thousands of dollars to help build skateboarding parks across the state.
Lead guitarist Mike McCready also resides part-time in Montana and his roots run deep in the state. “My connection is that both of my grandmas, Ina McCready and Doris Weipke, were born in Montana—Ina in Butte and Doris in Roundup. So I have it in my blood. My family and I love Big Sky and the skiing in Montana,” McCready wrote in an email to EBS.
“I love playing Montana because of Jeff and my connections with the state. … I always have loved the beauty of the magnificent sky and nature of the area,” he added. “Montana Pearl Jam fans are also usually pumped up from the first note and keep us energized the whole show.”
“The Home Shows” kick off the tour in Seattle Aug. 8 and Aug. 10, at Safeco Field, marking their first hometown appearance in five years. According to the band’s website, this will be the largest musical event in the city since The Rolling Stones’ two-night stint at the Kingdome in 1981.
Pearl Jam has announced a $1 million donation toward initiatives that address the issue of homelessness in Seattle and the surrounding King County, Washington, area.
“At last count, there were close to 12,000 homeless people living in Seattle. It is devastating,” McCready said. “We are a city of great wealth and ingenuity and I feel that we should be able to effectively tackle this issue together.”
The guitarist added that the band is challenging Seattle-area businesses and agencies to come on board and match their fundraising dollars. “We hope that our concerts raise conversation and awareness to ultimately help alleviate our homeless situation. We are looking into all sorts of beneficiaries right now and will be sharing what we learn as the shows get closer.”
Pearl Jam has now been playing live shows for 28 years, and in 2017 they were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. The band is rumored to be working on its 11th studio album.
A limited number of tickets for the Missoula concert will be released for sale at 10 a.m. MDT on Wednesday, Feb. 21, at all GrizTix locations and online at griztix.com. Visit pearljam.com for more information.