Once upon a time there was a woman who loved music and lived in Seattle, who missed out on the Grunge explosion of the early 1990's. She's really not sure how this happened, except that she wasn't paying attention; she was distracted. What could possibly distract a music lover living in Seattle from the biggest thing to hit music since the Beatles?! Stress, plain and simple. After not being able to get pregnant the word infertility started coming up in consultations with doctors. Testing began, which was not any fun. You would think during all this time of stress she would have wanted to go out and see some good local music, blow off some steam, have a couple beers, unfortunately that was not the case. She didn't feel like doing much of anything. Miraculously it wasn't infertility because she ended up getting pregnant the fall of 1991 the old fashioned, but fun, way.
During the stressful and depressing time of possible infertility, the ecstatic time of being pregnant, the joy of giving birth and taking care of the helpless little creature, Geeky Guy would try pulling her into the world of music as Grunge was exploding all over the radio.
"Listen to this song! Isn't it amazing?" He would say.
"It sounds really dark and depressing. Why would I want to listen to that when I'm so depressed? (Or happy depending on whether he was asking before or after getting pregnant) Turn the station. Find me some Achy Breaky Heart" She would say.
In reality Nirvana's sound was very intriguing to her and she did like it, but the other stuff... Alice in Chains, Soundgarden and Stone Temple Pilots? Too depressing. Smashing Pumpkins, Red Hot Chili Peppers and Pearl Jam? Too much like any other rock band out there. Her mind wasn't on the music, it was elsewhere. She wasn't listening or paying attention.
Then one sunny late spring day in 1993 while riding in the van with Geeky Guy and Star Wars Baby she heard a voice on the radio. A voice that made her breath catch. A voice she hadn't heard before. She cranked up the radio and was mesmerized by the voice.
"Who IS this?" She asks Geeky Guy.
After rolling his eyes and saying "Pffftttt", he said, "this is one of the bands I've been telling you about for months and months, this is Pearl Jam."
"Wow", was all she could say.
That was the first time she actually heard Pearl Jam, the first time she was actually paying attention. She was still busy with Star Wars baby and running an in home day care, but whenever that voice came on the radio she paid attention. She listened to their first album whenever she wasn't listening to Muppet Sing-a-Long, Disney Silly Songs, or whatever silly sing-a-long cd they day care kids were into!
One night Geeky Guy was being a couch potato flipping through stations on the TV. Dedicated day care mom was down in the day care room cleaning and getting ready for the beasts wonderful little darlings to come the next day. Geeky Guy called down to her from upstairs.
"You have to come see this NOW!" He yelled.
She came running, thinking something horrible was happening. In fact it was Pearl Jam on MTV, they were re-airing past episodes of Unplugged. That was the first time she ever saw them. The lead singer so charismatic, yet somehow bashful. The lead guitar player looked like he was 15. They were all so fresh faced, with long hair and contagious smiles. She was hooked. With crazed eyes and passion the singer sang Porch in such a way she'd never heard before.
Time went by, another pregnancy occurred throwing Dancing Daughter into the family. Being pregnant and breast feeding through two kids took roughly six years of her life, six of the most wonderful, frustrating, satisfying years of her life. She wouldn't change any of that time for anything, not even being mindful through the Grunge explosion.
When the band's 4th album, No Code, came out in 1996 Geeky Guy was one of the first people to purchase it at the local music store. With the purchase he received a No Code cardboard stencil (which couldn't be found at the time of this writing) and a No Code rubber stamp. She was as excited to get those treasures as Geeky Guy was to give them to her.
In the back of her mind she was thinking how cool it would be to see Pearl Jam in concert, although she was terrified of the prospect. She saw video of how the crowd behaved at these shows. She saw the mosh pits and the crowd surfing. She was a mother for God's sake, she didn't belong in that crowd! But by 1998 and the release of the band's 5th album, Yield, she was so in love with Pearl Jam she just HAD to go see them in concert, no matter how scared she was. She was done breastfeeding, she wasn't pregnant, her children were 3 and 4 now, they could take care of themselves if she was injured... kinda.
Geeky Guy thought it was a great idea to go see Pearl Jam perform, so when they announced concert dates for the Yield tour they made plans to attend.
To be continued...