The Power of Eddie Vedder’s Voice: Hear Isolated Vocal Tracks from Three Classic Pearl Jam Songs

A life­time of rock star excess has tak­en its toll on Eddie Vedder’s voice but not on his tal­ent. Most recent per­for­mances have tilt­ed towards the gen­tle, the acoustic, the Amer­i­cana, reflect­ing his larg­er embrace of the broad expanse of Amer­i­can music. And yes, he can still rock when needs be.

But these iso­lat­ed vocal tracks–”Alive” above and “Black” and “Porch” below–show how pow­er­ful Vedder’s pipes were back in the day at the height of grunge. Ved­der used a lot of vibra­to, more than one can hear in the full band ver­sions. He doesn’t use it so much when he holds a note, but on all the lit­tle notes in between.

And on “Porch” there’s a pow­er­ful plead­ing to the entire deliv­ery that’s both vul­ner­a­ble and hyper­mas­cu­line at the same time. Where Kurt Cobain always seemed to be deliv­er­ing rage inward, Ved­der deliv­ered it out­wards, like the sound of moun­tains as a log­ging com­pa­ny got to work.

The videos try to match up con­cert footage with these stu­dio tracks and the fact they sync so well show the con­sis­ten­cy in his deliv­ery. (The sped up tem­po changes, not so much.)

Of course, iso­lat­ed vocals also mean remix­ers attack! Here’s a few that might hor­ri­fy a few grunge stal­warts.

via Laugh­ing Squid

Relat­ed Con­tent:

Eddie Ved­der Sings Disney’s “Let It Go” at Pearl Jam Con­cert in Italy

Willie Nel­son Sings Pearl Jam’s “Just Breathe” (And We’re Tak­ing a Deep Breath Too)

The Rolling Stones “Shat­tered” Cov­ered by Eddie Ved­der & Julie Andrews (Ok, It’s Real­ly Jeanne Trip­ple­horn)

Ted Mills is a free­lance writer on the arts who cur­rent­ly hosts the artist inter­view-based FunkZone Pod­cast and is the pro­duc­er of KCR­W’s Curi­ous Coast. You can also fol­low him on Twit­ter at @tedmills, read his oth­er arts writ­ing at and/or watch his films here.

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Comments (4)
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  • Melissa B. says:

    ALWAYS my FAVE singer, for­ev­er!

  • Kurt S says:

    The BEST ! Eddie Ved­der could yodel and more than half the room would be in tears say­ing ” that is so beau­ti­ful / mov­ing ! Thank you LORD for allow­ing me to grow up in ” E.Vedder and PEARL JAM’S TIME !

  • Sandra-Jean Leonard says:

    Eddie has an amaz­ing and pow­er­ful voice. Pearl Jam music is on every one of my playlists because of Eddie’s voice.
    Of course I love the music but it’s that voice that grabs ahold of my soul.
    Eddie could sing the own­ers man­u­al from my DVD play­er and it would move me!!
    I agree whole­heart­ed­ly with the sen­ti­ment of being grate­ful to live in the world while Pearl Jam and Eddie Ved­der were around!

  • Ruben says:

    Only one thing can be said!! Amaz­ing­ly unique!!! Nobody can play that songs with the same soul.

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