Interview: Pearl Jam’s Dave Krusen Talks Rock Hall of Fame Reunion, Soundgarden & Matt Cameron


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Pearl Jam were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame on Friday, and original drummer Dave Krusen was among the inducted members. Krusen brought a stadium filling drum sound to Pearl Jam as they were writing Ten in a basement during the band’s early days. While he left the band after recording Ten in 1991, over 25 years after his departure his thunderous drum sound remains a key part of Pearl Jam’s landmark debut album.

Krusen reunited with Pearl Jam to perform “Alive” at the Hall of Fame induction ceremony at Barclays Center in Brooklyn, and as Krusen told Alternative Nation, it felt like no time had passed. Read our quick e-mail Q&A below, where Krusen discusses joining the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.

How did the band first reach out to you about performing a song at the Hall of Fame?

Matt Cameron was the first to reach out, and then Jeff. I was so stoked they talked about me playing a tune, then Ed called and it was so great to catch up, made it all real for me.

How was it when you first saw the band again at rehearsals at Pearl Jam Headquarters?

It was like no time had passed, felt great and they are such cool guys, and now I’m sober so, just such a better experience.

What did you guys talk about?

We talked about a lot, obviously I can’t recount, that’d be a bit much for a quick interview. 🙂

Was it easy to get the musical chemistry back when you guys started playing, did you notice any difference in your own playing or Eddie, Stone, Jeff, or Mike’s? How did you guys settle on “Alive”?

We do have a certain sound when we play, and it seemed like it was still there all things considered. Big difference is we’re all better at what we do. So it was awesome, I thought…

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Any cool stories about meeting anyone at the Hall of Fame? David Letterman gave the speech, I saw Michael J. Fox with Ed in pictures, and then of course you had Journey, the Rush members, Yes, and all of the other inductees.

My son met Michael J. Fox in the bathroom, he’s a fan and that made my night. I’m a big fan of that guy.

How did it feel when you got onstage to give your speech and perform? You gave a short, but great speech, and your performance was incredible!

Hahaha thanks Brett! I don’t know what I said, I was freaked out. I was standing back by the drums and saw my name on the teleprompter, and was like holy shit! I ran out and hopefully thanked everyone.

How was it hanging out with Pearl Jam’s other drummers, Matt Cameron and Jack Irons? It was great to see you and Jack there, and Ed give Dave Abbruzzese and Matt Chamberlain shout outs.

It was so comforting having those drumming legends to hang with at the ceremony. Such kind and gracious gentlemen.


Jeff had a great shirt full of great artists who aren’t in the Rock Hall of Fame. Anybody you’d like to see get in?

SOUNDGARDEN and the Sonics!! I’m voting for them every year I know that.

What’s next for you musically? Maybe some more Pearl Jam guest spots, or collaborations with other artists?

I work with so many different talented people I’d hate to forget someone, just check my social media I guess- which I suck at and hope to improve on- So thankful for this experience, I’m a lucky guy.

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