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Fightin’ the Good Fight

Pearl Jam has always been a political sort of band — recall the Ticketmaster boycott, Eddie Vedder’s public Bush bashing, and the group’s aversion to big business, including their own record labels. Unfortunately, their political maneuvers don’t always work out. It’s like the Midas touch in reverse: Everything they endorse turns to poop. Their refusal to follow label orders dropped them pretty far off the radar during the late Nineties and put them in a bad way with Epic Records. What’d they do? They swore off record labels, hoping to do it on their own, but then ended up signing with J Records for their 2006 self-titled release — J Records being owned by Sony BMG, the same group that owns Epic. Oops. In early May, they backed an Oregon senatorial candidate, Steve Novick, a tiny (four-foot-nine) liberal Democrat, even pledging concert proceeds to his campaign if he won his primary. He lost.

Yeesh. Let’s just hope no one was listening when the group declared its support for Obama with a little ditty called “Rock Around Barack,” a reworking of the Bill Haley & His Comets classic. The band plays the Cruzan Amphitheatre at 7:30 p.m., the very first show of its North American tour. Secure your ticket starting at $42 plus any outrageous service charges at Hey, even rock stars need to pick their battles.
Wed., June 11, 7:30 p.m., 2008


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