Music has been a kind of mystical way to speak out since ancient times. Today we have all the wide range of music with different genres, that’s why many people think that it’s impossible to create something new. Besides this thought, music became a more powerful thing than just a catchy sound, and made out to be a direct connection between people and ideas. From the last century musicians got a priceless opportunity to translate their ideas with wide range of audio and video tools, and with personal participation in the philosophical stream. One of these lucky activists is an American rock band called Pearl Jam.


How Pearl Jam Became Activists

Pearl Jam is one of the key bands in the grunge movement of the early 1990s. Grunge has always addressed ideas of social alienation, concerns about confinement and a desire for freedom itself. The main themes in grunge are “tolerance of difference”, “support of women”, “mistrust of authority” and “cynicism towards big corporations”. Thus, along all the band’s career, members of Pearl Jam became known for their rebellious spirit.

These boys stood strong against traditional music industry practices, which strived and prospered with the pop scene boom of those times. Even if such protest actions seemed like musicians are just exaggerating in their juvenile maximalism, they also stood against unfair monopolisation and political regime. Perl Jam actively fought for human rights, while for many people It seemed that the band spent their time tearing apart own fame.

However, after all this hysterical fame, Perl Jam have also got all the opportunities, resources and facilities and they knew exactly what’s to do next.

Politics and Censorship

This band plays grunge and that’s why they couldn’t have gotten past a political situation of their country. As members of Rock the Vote and Vote for Change, the band has encouraged voter registration and participation in United States elections. Pearl Jam are musicians at first, so number of their songs, including “Bu$hleaguer” and “World Wide Suicide”, are openly critical towards US administration. At Lollapalooza festival in 2007, at the end of “Daughter” Vedder sang “George Bush leave this world alone”. But constitutes censorship didn’t get past, and the band later discovered that some of the Bush-related lyrics were excised from the AT&T webcast of the event.

In the end, it wasn’t enough for Perl Jam, so they put aside the idea of changing the US administration and decided to change the world.

The Main Activities of Pearl Jam

It’s a representative and a kind of unique occasion when money and fame fall to the right hands. Throughout its career, Pearl Jam has promoted wide social and political ideas, from pro-choice sentiments to public protests with current administration. While the band fought for a number of causes it comes as no surprise that they became a loud voice for many people. Pearl Jam put an impact to aware society of world hungry, the environment and wildlife protection and made a great contribution in research of rare diseases and help with the problem of carbon emissions.


The band, and especially the frontman Eddie Vedder, have been vocal supporters of the Pro-Choice movement since those times when many states of America promoted the policy against abortion. It was a fierce struggle for freedom of body and choice when many opposite sides were ready even to kill for their ideas. However, this furious threat to life haven’t made an obstacle for the band. Vedder stood on a stool and wrote “PRO-CHOICE!” on his arm in protest when the band performed the song “Porch” at one of concerts in 1992. To date, the band are members of several pro-choice organisations, including Choice USA and Voters for Choice.


The Vitalogy Foundation

One of permanent activities of the band is The Vitalogy Foundation. It is a public non-profit organisation that was founded in 2006 by the members of Pearl Jam and their manager. The Foundation supports the efforts of non-profit organisations in the fields of community health, the environment, arts, education and social change. With help of The Vitalogy Foundation each member of Perl Jam promotes many different important project and organisations, such as EB Research Partnership, witch helps ‘butterfly children‘, or Missoula Food Bank, which builds a hunger-free community.

How do they raise money? It becomes possible with the help of their fans and everyone, who comes to their shows. In other words, every concert is a fundraising event for this organisation, because some part from each sold ticket is contributed to the Vitalogy Foundation. The other ways to support the foundation are donations, auctions (including eBay), partnerships or Amazon Smile, where a buyer selects ‘Vitalogy Foundation’ to direct donations from eligible purchases.

Carbon Mitigation

Pearl Jam was named 2011 Planet Defenders by Rock The Earth for their environmental activism and their large-scale efforts to decrease their own carbon emissions. Since 2003, Pearl Jam has calculated the metric tons of carbon dioxide output from the band’s world tours. Those calculations are based on such things as band and crew flights, hotel stays, bus mileage and the number of fans attending each show. Based on this calculation, the band gives a portion of tour profits to invest in environmental projects that serve to mitigate carbon dioxide.

It is impossible to overestimate Perl Jam’s contribute to the environment. They are ready to help our planet with donations or planting trees without a hesitation. In 2006 the band took part in a nationwide eco-tour “Dig It” in which artists and activists band together to celebrate the environment through volunteerism and music. And not so long ago, in 2015, guitarist Stone Gossard and volunteers worked together to plant more than 500 native shrubs and trees in support of latest project for FORTERRA C3 on Arbor Day. To support this project, Pearl Jam’s donation went to improve native forests at Discovery Park.


What’s next?

Pearl Jam continues to be environmental and social activists, and even the fans are joining in the movement. Now is the time to fight your apathy, so you can calculate a carbon footprint on the page of their website and choose the way to help your home and family, Planet Earth, for better future, together with Pearl Jam.

Subscribe to WM Daily. Be In Touch With Rebellious Voices