Pearl Jam’s Eddie Vedder Rocks Out With Minnesota Twins Pitcher Jared Burton
Pearl Jam frontman Eddie Vedder is an avid baseball fan and is usually up for meeting up with players who make their living playing the game. Recently that led Vedder to hanging out with members of the Minnesota Twins baseball team and pitcher Jared Burton now has an experience he'll never forget.
TwinCities.com reports that Burton, who typically has his custom-made Breedlove guitar in his clubhouse locker, previously met Vedder during the team's visit to Seattle last year. This time, knowing he was about to meet Vedder again, he made sure his guitar was handy.
According to reports, after the team's game this past Monday (April 8), they retired to the team hotel to watch the NCAA Final Four championship. The pitcher brought out the guitar and played while Vedder sang 'Better Man' and 'Yellow Ledbetter' for all those hanging out. Then Vedder took the guitar and strummed through several requests, including bits of 'Porch' and a cover of the Beatles' 'You've Got to Hide Your Love Away.' The frontman then finished, marking the occasion by autographing the guitar for Burton. The pitcher says he plans to retire the instrument and encase it to display in a place of honor at his home.
"That was a once-in-a-lifetime experience, to play with a guy that's a no-doubt rock-and-roll hall of famer," said Burton. "That's pretty much the end of that guitar and he was the last guy to play it." The pitcher, who says he knows how to play 10 to 12 Pearl Jam songs, was nervous at first to play with Vedder, but loosened up after the singer offered encouragement.
Teammate Brian Duensing said afterward he was surprised at Burton's poise in such a situation, adding, "I can't imagine how nervous I would have been if I was him. Baseball-wise, as a pitcher, I wouldn't be able to feel my feet or my legs on the mound, probably wouldn't even really be breathing, to be honest. And it would be something where you can't quite feel the ball in your hand. It would be incredibly nerve-wracking."
Burton concludes, "I've always idolized [Eddie]. His voice, his lyrics, the passion he exudes when you see him perform -- he's just always been my favorite artist. When you meet him and talk to him and he looks at you, you can tell he's got a lot of special things going through that head of his. He's a poet, just an incredible human being."