Last night at the Outside Lands Festival in San Francisco, Pearl Jam put on a memorable performance full of classic cuts like "Alive" and a boatload of new tunes from their forthcoming LP Backspacer. In the years since they first broke out with 1991's Ten, the band has built themselves into a well-oiled live machine with constantly rotating setlists that draw from their catalog of over 200 songs. McCready told the story about his band's first show in Seattle, which happened only ten days after they were formed and were still operating under the name Mookie Blaylock, something that always raised an eyebrow for the guitarist.
"I really wanted to change it," he told us. "When it got to the point where we signed a record deal, the other guys didn't really care about having to change it, but I was adamant about it. It was a guy's name! Of course, then we ended up linking two words together that sounded cool and made up a bunch of stories about it later."
McCready also issued something of an apology to MTV News producer Matt Elias, whose first concert was a 1995 Pearl Jam show on the same grounds where the band played last night. That night, the band had only gotten through a handful of songs when singer Eddie Vedder had to bow out because of a bout of food poisoning. The show continued with Neil Young taking the reins, but Elias still felt a little put out. "I'm sorry about that man," McCready told Elias. "We won't have anything like that tonight." And while tiny microbes don't care about anybody's promises, McCready made good on his guarantee. Was it worth the 14-year wait for Elias?