Just weeks before the release of its highly anticipated ninth studio LP, Backspacer, Pearl Jam has spoken out regarding its deal with big-box retailer Target, and its message to fans is simple: just keep doing what you’ve done throughout their career. Oh, and be excited. Be, be excited.
According to Rolling Stone, the bottom line with the much-discussed move from Pearl Jam is that Target “passed the band’s moral barometer” and “opened the possibility of cool exclusives for die-hard fans.”
Now, considering Pearl Jam’s oft-controversial history with any number of corporations, including Ticketmaster, last year’s debacle with AT&T at Lollapalooza, and its decision not to re-sign with Sony, the band’s moral barometer seems pretty sturdy. What’s more, it appears that the deal with Target didn’t require the almighty Jam to “Sever ties with the independent record stores or their own Ten Club, and it paved the way for Backspacer to appear on iTunes and greatly improved the bands take on each CD sold,” explained guitarist Stone Gossard in the interview. If you’re familiar with the band’s history, Gossard once stood before Congress to try and bring Ticketmaster down, so with that in mind, how bad can Target really be?
Lead singer Eddie Vedder goes on to state, Weve put a tremendous amount of thought into this, and weve done it in a way that we think will be good for everybody. I cant think of anything weve ever done without putting it through our own personal moral barometer. Target has passed for us. The fans just have to trust us. After hearing the righteous first single from Backspacer, I think it’s safe to say most fans will be on board with this one.
If there were ever any doubt as to who Pearl Jam is always looking out for, a hop over to Target’s site tells fans that they will get to select two of a possible 11 concerts for download, and the shows span Pearl Jams entire career with the purchase of Backspacer.
There aren’t many bands that can sign a deal with a big-box retailer yet still consider the fans their number one priority. If anyone can do it, it’s Pearl Jam. Dear Santa Claus, why can’t there be more bands like them?
Pearl Jam 2009 Tour Dates:
09/21 – Seattle, WA @ Key Arena *
09/22 – Seattle, WA @ Key Arena *
09/25 – Vancouver, BC @ GM Place *
09/26 – Portland, OR @ Clark County Ampitheater *
09/28 – Salt Lake City, UT @ E Center *
09/30 – Los Angeles, CA @ Gibson Amphitheatre *
10/01 – Los Angeles, CA @ Gibson Amphitheatre *
10/04 – Austin, TX @ Austin City Limits
10/06 – Los Angeles, CA @ Gibson Amphitheatre *
10/07 – Los Angeles, CA @ Gibson Amphitheatre *
10/09 – San Diego, CA @ Viejas Arena *
10/27 – Philadelphia, PA @ Wachovia Spectrum
10/28 – Philadelphia, PA @ Wachovia Spectrum
10/30 – Philadelphia, PA @ Wachovia Spectrum
10/31 – Philadelphia, PA @ Wachovia Spectrum
11/14 – Perth, AU @ Members Equity Stadium
11/17 – Adelaide, AU @ Adelaide Oval
11/20 – Melbourne, AU @ Etihad Stadium
11/22 – Sydney, AU @ Sydney Football Stadium
11/25 – Brisbane, AU @ QSAC Stadium
11/27 – Auckland, NZ @ Mt Smart Stadium
11/29 – Christchurch, NZ @ AMI Stadium
* = w/ Ben Harper & the Relentless7