Eddie Vedder And Sean Penn Through the Years Of Music And Film

This weekend the annual Ohana Music Festival is taking place at Doherty State Park in sunny California. The festival headliners include The Strokes, Nathaniel Rateliff and The Night Sweats, Glen Hansard,  Eddie Vedder, Incubus, and the Red Hot Chili Peppers.

Pearl Jam is my favorite band. And if you are a fan of music you have probably discovered other music and art through that music. I discovered Neil Young, The Ramones, and The La’s just to name a few while listening to Pearl Jam. I also discovered actor Sean Penn.

One of the first albums I ever bought was Pearl Jam’s album Yield. While thumbing through the booklet that came with the CD, I found the picture that went along with the song IN HIDING. There really isn’t any lyrics to the song, but a little written message at the bottom of the page “ Thanks Sean”. And since there is no other member of Pearl Jam with the first name Sean, I thought I made a discovery that only I knew about. That the song was kind of in a way a nod to Sean Penn in some way. I was a dumb kid, but it did feel like magic I must admit.

Eddie Vedder and Sean Penn are friends and have worked together many times in the past. The first time was in 1995 for the film Dead Man Walking. And then again in 2001 for the film I Am Sam. But it was in 2007 that Penn would direct a film called Into the Wild. The film stars Emile Hirsch and tells the true story of Christopher McCandless who abandons his possessions and life savings and hitchhikes to Alaska. Vedder comprised the soundtrack.

When Sean Penn isn’t tracking down drug dealers in Mexico and handing out knuckle sandwiches to fans, he is actually a very fine actor and director. I hope Penn and Eddie Vedder work with each other again very soon. And if they don’t, they could just stay home and wax their surfboards as the Hard Sun sets.


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