Billboard have unearthed a rare interview with Pearl Jam frontman Eddie Vedder from 1991 where the frontman shows off his sense of humor. He makes a hilarious joke about detesting smoking and drinking.
Vedder quipped, “I won’t be doing that. I won’t be drinking any beer, and, um, smoking I really detest [laughs]. So does [Chris] Cornell. We get to be freaks about it. It’s just so awful. It’s just so…”
He also discussed drawing on his arms with a marker on MTV’s Headbanger’s Ball, “I did an interview with Headbangers Ball last night and I drew Fugazi all over my arms with marker. And he didn’t know what the fuck I was doing. But Riki Rachtman has all these tattoos. Do you know who he is? Riki Rachtman? He’s like this metal guy who does this Headbangers Ball thing on MTV.
So we interviewed with him and I kind of made a joke of his tattoos by writing all over my arms. So you would look at it and go, ‘God that’s really foolish drawing all over your arms ’cause like it’s permanent marker and it’s really big and it’s black and it’s going to last for like a couple of days,’ and then as soon as they think of that, then they’ll think, ‘Oh my God, look at this guy. He’s got them on for life, what an idiot.'” Vedder later said he didn’t see himself and Chris Cornell getting tattooes.
He also discussed how he joined Pearl Jam.
“It was Jack [Irons], my friend Jack with the dolphin tattoo [laughs]. He used to play drums for the Chili Peppers and Stone and Jeff asked if he wanted to play drums with them, but he’s got a band called Eleven, which are amazing. I hope you get to hear them one day; they were just released on Morgan Creek Records. You’ll probably get it soon, I hope. He said he couldn’t do it because of that, but when they asked about singers, he mentioned me and then he gave me this tape. And I hadn’t slept at night, as usual, and went surfing in the morning and I just had all these ideas.
And I had this idea for this three-song like mini-opera kind of thing. And I had listened to the music, just the instrumental tape. What they sent me down was Stone sent me down the tape of Mike playing lead with Jeff and Stone, and then Matt Cameron from Soundgarden playing drums. No vocals or words or anything. And so I went into this little shack I was staying at and wrote ‘Alive’ and ‘Once’ and there’s one other song called ‘Footsteps,’ which actually Cornell did a version which turned into ‘Times of Trouble’ from the Temple record [Temple of the Dog]. So that was the third song.”