Eddie Vedder has released a cover of the John Lennon classic, “Imagine.”
The Pearl Jam frontman performed the song at the Super Bock Super Rock festival in Portugal on July 18, and he’s now making it available to assist Heartbeat: Amplifying Youth Voices, an organization that provides opportunities and spaces for young Israeli and Palestinian musicians to work together, and amplify their voices to influence the world around them.
Vedder debuted “Imagine” during a solo show in Portugal after receiving criticism over anti-war comments he made during Pearl Jam’s concert at Milton Keynes in England.
While the singer didn’t mention any specific countries during the speech, some interpreted it as singling out Israel over their ongoing fight with Hamas militants – despite the number of current conflicts around the globe.
Vedder later posted a follow-up statement to clarify his onstage comments, quoting Lennon’s classic track.
“We are such a remarkable species,” wrote the singer. “Capable of creating beauty. Capable of awe-inspiring advancements. We must be capable of resolving conflicts without bloodshed.”
“I don’t know how to reconcile the peaceful rainbow of flags we see each night at our concerts with the daily news of a dozen global conflicts and their horrific consequences. I don’t know how to process the feeling of guilt and complicity when I hear about the deaths of a civilian family from a U.S. drone strike. But I know that we can’t let the sadness turn into apathy. And I do know we are better off when we reach out to each other. I hope someday you’ll join us…”
Fan-shot wideo of Vedder's performance of "Imagine" in Portigal is available below.
Vedder and Pearl Jam launch their fall US tour in support of "Lightning Bolt" in Cincinnati, Ohio this week.
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Search Pearl Jam at hennemusic