Is that a Pearl Jam hat?
Donate enough money to a good cause -- or win the Red Sox their first World Series in 80-odd years -- and you too can rock out with Pearl Jam. Last night between songs PJ's Eddie Vedder went on a rant about how part of the ticket price ($51 + service fees, ouch!) was to be donated to Horizons for Homeless Children, a Boston-based organization that attempts to break the cycle of homelessness, starting with children. Then, he mentioned that a local man and his cohorts have agreed to match every dollar that PJ donates, and that local man, avid/rabid Pearl Jam fan, is Theo Epstein.
About 20 minutes later, as they were starting to close down shop with "Rockin' In the Free World," an unannounced special guest guitarist came out donning a hat, wig, and GIANT sweatshirt. After a performance that included lots of off-time jumping, sloppy axe work, and falling to his knees to rock even harder, the garb was shed to reveal . . . you guessed it, Epstein. (Some audience-shot photos can be seen here.) Who woulda thunk it? I was hoping for the Boss, who was rumored to be in the building. Oh well.
That capped a pretty rock and roll day for Epstein, who kicked off with a morning announcement that for the second year his Foundation To Be Named Later would be throwing a bash at Ye Olde Fenway Park in conjunction with ESPN rockabilly fanatic Peter Gammons and CBS sitcommer Mike O'Malley. The 2nd annual Hot Stove, Cool Music: The Fenway Sessions takes place July 12, with music by the Click Five, Juliana Hatfield, Buffalo Tom, the Gentlemen, and a bunch of Sox irregulars including Lenny DiNardo and Epstein. Now if they can just get Eddie to replace last year's faux-Eddie impersonation by Bronson Arroyo, maybe they'll fill the joint.