52 IN 52

The 52 Albums that define my love for music

Week 20/Album 20

Who: Pearl Jam - "Ten"

When: 1991-2

Why:  Pearl Jam was one of the bands at the head of the Seattle/Grunge movement that took the world by storm in the early 90's. They, along with bands like Nirvana, Soundgarden, Alice in Chains and Screaming Trees were everywhere.  My mother was was the one that actually got me into them. Plus, MTV seemed like they were only playing these bands for a short time, minus the throw in of Boyz II Men, BBD, ABC and all the rest of the early mainstream 90's hip-hop (which I liked, but nothing really stuck). Pearl Jam had a nice groove to it that I enjoyed more than the screaming the other bands were doing. I never really got into the grunge scene that much, but I cant deny that this record had an influence on me in the regards of its (even)flow.

Where: Never saw Pearl Jam, and really have no desire to.


In fall of 1990 my parents packed us up and moved us to Suburbia. At the time, music had become 2nd fiddle to things like making new friends, playing sports, watching wrestling and things like that. The music I had up until that point had held me over pretty well until late 1991 and early 1992 hit. I had become a bit more comfortable in my surroundings, and had a core group of solid buddies. Then, out of nowhere, grunge hit.

Nirvana was everywhere. I liked "Smells like teen spirit" but got sick of it very quickly. So, I never really liked or got into Nirvana (and catch shit still for it, but whatever). But, at that same time, mother had bought me a tape of a band called Pearl Jam. Well, she bought it for herself, but I eventually took it over.  I like this better than Nirvana and the rest because it just seemed like it wasn't a mess. I really enjoyed Eddie Veddar's voice at the time time too.

Pearl Jam's Vs. was pretty good but after that I lost interest. I wouldn't even call myself a fan either, but if I had to pick one record out of the "grunge era" it would be this one. Never bought a flannel, either.

This record, if anything, is a reminder of a major change in my life. Moving away from everything I knew and starting over far away. Its the record that instantly brings me back to thinking about forming new friendships and starting a new life in a different town.

After this record my musical taste started forming and taking on a life of its own. This is probably the last pop/mainstream record that I would obtain for quite some time.