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Pearl Jam — Black (Live)
Album: Benaroya Hall - 10/22/03
Avg rating:
7.8

Your rating:
Total ratings: 3446









Released: 2003
Length: 6:43
Plays (last 30 days): 2
Sheets of empty canvas
Untouched sheets of clay
Were laid spread out before me
As her body once did

All five horizons
Revolved around her soul
As the Earth reaches the Sun
Now, the air I tasted and breathed
Has taken a turn

Ooh, and all I taught her was everything
Ooh, I know she gave me all that she wore
And now my bitter hands
Chafe beneath the clouds
Of what was everything
All the pictures have
All been washed in black
Tattooed everything

I take a walk outside
I'm surrounded by some kids at play
I can feel their laughter
So why do I sear?

Mm, and twisted thoughts that spin round my head
I'm spinning, oh, I'm spinning
How quick the Sun can drop away
And now my bitter hands
Cradle broken glass
Of what was everything
All the pictures have
All been washed in black
Tattooed everything
All the love gone bad
Turned my world to black
Tattooed all I see, all that I am, all I'll be, yeah

Uh-huh
Uh-huh
Woo
I know that someday you'll have a beautiful life
I know you'll be a star
In somebody else's sky
But why, why, why can't it be
Why can't it be mine?
Ah, yeah
Uh, woo-hoo
Comments (457)add comment
Chills. 
Every-single-time.
Fucking masterpiece.
a bit over done with the praise methinks,

yeah its a good song/piece of music but slowing it down and letting the crowd pee their pants ( sorry shorts, for you dumbass yanks ) doesn't elevate this to the exalted levels of 8 and beyond 
goosebumps
 geonuine wrote:
Just yanked my rating from 9 to 10 


Missed them when my daughter was a teenager and totally into them. Glad to have caught up eventually. Better late than never.
 StoneyG wrote:

It's not exactly Eddie's though.  He wrote the lyrics, but Stone Gossard wrote the song.

It's basically a three-chord song.  

Before Eddie's lyrics, it was just Stone's "E Ballad."

Just yanked my rating from 9 to 10 
It's.........just like..........being there....
The ratings stopped work on my machine.  Never mind, already a 10.
🖤
Extraordinary. This live version is taking me even higher than the plane I’m currently travelling on. The crowd is pushing the song to sublime levels.
 StoneyG wrote:

It's not exactly Eddie's though.  He wrote the lyrics, but Stone Gossard wrote the song.

Besides, what does the pot or beer intake of the crowd have to do with it?  I've heard far worse crowds.  And which are YOUR masterpieces?

 
It's the fans who pay the bills, isn't it? Let em sing!!
most enjoyable rock tune on this rainy day in so cal
Fun fact -This performance was on the 13th anniversary of Pj playing together as a band. It was recorded live at Benaroya Hall where the Seattle Symphony performs -an acoustically perfect room. The entire performance is worth every second. Thanks Bill for bringing this gem out today.
It's my birthday, so thanks Bill  for Black :)
Webfoot wrote:

It's mind meld. Jeez!
 Egctheow wrote:

Thanks for pointing this out.
 

Just doing my part to advance humankind.
 cosmiclint wrote:
How did I have this at 9? Up to 10 you Godlike live version.
 

 

Slickamoe wrote:
Hearing the crowd sing knocks it down to Sucko Barfo!
 
Must never have gone to a concert. Maybe you have, but did not know the performer or their music that you kept your mouth closed. Like you should have with this comment.

Up 1 from 9 to 10.
Wow, that was pretty damn moving. Must have been awesome to have been there.
I saw PJ at MSG in the mid-2000s, and was surprised and impressed by the avid fanbase they still had. Every song was full of audience singing like here, and it was magical.
 eyeyeye wrote:
It doesn't get any better than this!
 
Yes it does!  When the song ends!  
Black is not bad. not crazy. for human but.
Nothing beats being part of a crowd of fans singing along on a masterpiece like this. Must have been a fantastic experience that I can barely imagine listening to it. 
 Webfoot wrote:

It's mind meld. Jeez!  
 
Thanks for pointing this out.
My wife and I were at a sing-along showing of "Bohemian Rhapsody" in San Francisco last weekend.  Everyone wore Queen crowns.  This version brings to mind the scene in the recording studio where Brian Mayne is thinking about how to involve the audience and came up with the stomp stomp clap.  He wanted there to be connection between the band and the performers.  What I find beautiful about this live version is I think I feel that connection, can imagine being there.  How I wish I'd actually been there.   
Loving the live version and the sing-along.
 
I LOVE IT!   The crowd singing is fun. They were having a great time.
Ugh ugh ugh. Triple ugh. Tossers' Ball stuff. 
 cosmiclint wrote:
How did I have this at 9? Up to 10 you Godlike live version.
 
Hearing the crowd sing knocks it down to Sucko Barfo!


 Egctheow wrote:
Closing my eyes and getting swallowed by this. Not a Vulcan Mindmelt, but not from far from it. Kind of song that seems to be coming from within, for me at least. Wish there were a gently swaying-closed-eyes emoji! Thanks
 
It's mind meld. Jeez!  
Closing my eyes and getting swallowed by this. Not a Vulcan Mindmelt, but not from far from it. Kind of song that seems to be coming from within, for me at least. Wish there were a gently swaying-closed-eyes emoji! Thanks
un grande 9!!!
WOW....as a 'slowly becoming a fan of PJ' I have to say that was absolutely stunning, the guitar solo outro gave me chicken skin and the crowd verse did too...and I don't even know the song!  
My rating went up to a 7 and maybe next time it'll be an 8?  Long Live RP!!
Outrageous guitar !!   I cried it was so beautifully played.
 StoneyG wrote:

It's not exactly Eddie's though.  He wrote the lyrics, but Stone Gossard wrote the song.

Besides, what does the pot or beer intake of the crowd have to do with it?  I've heard far worse crowds.  And which are YOUR masterpieces?

 

Yeah, fer cryin out loud man!
It's just a big ol' sweet rock love fest!
I can just picture guys high-fiving, kids hugging it out, couples mashing face.
I can also see the cranky sonbitch who thinks everyone's an idiot.
Sweet merciful crap, Eddie... Jeez. No question... TEN.
And a solid TEN for those voices in attendance too.
 eyeyeye wrote:
It doesn't get any better than this!
 
Actually, it can't get any worse than this.  Oy.
I'm usually not a big fan of listening to an audience sing rather than the band ... but in this one, it works for me.  Not quite sure why.

And no, that's not another snarky swipe at Vedder's voice, which I like just fine thankyouverymuch.  ;-)
It doesn't get any better than this!
Ouais ça "fout les poils" {#Smile}
 
Azrica wrote:



 

God his monotone drone is awful.
 
Me as well ! {#Hearteyes}

slikr wrote:
 me too
Dazzerb wrote:
goosebumps

 

 

 

 cosmiclint wrote:
How did I have this at 9? Up to 10 you Godlike live version.

 How did you EVER have it at a mere 9?!?  You're Cosmic, tho... so U knew to correct your error.  I have many all the time to correct... but I sure as hell try to catch them and do so...


How did I have this at 9? Up to 10 you Godlike live version.
 LowPhreak wrote:

You mean the Potemkin Villagers, braindead housewives on Valium, and assorted uptight fundie Christians and Mormons that made up the typical Welk fanbase. A far cry I'd say from the usual PJ audience.

 

Yeah, no users of valium or other drugs at the Pearl Jam concert, fer shur.  But that is not the point, is it?  Schmaltz is schmaltz, and this definitely qualifies.
absolutely awesome song, Vedder has Andaz (style) and POWER
 ziggytrix wrote:
Anyone ever hear that urban legend that spawned from Vedder's refusal to let this song be released as a single since it was "too personal"? Something about some campers singing it around a campfire being assaulted by Eddie? I wish I could remember the details. If there even were details. Might have just been something fabricated from whole cloth by an idiot friend...

 
It's not an urban legend: the band refused to release Black as a single despite the label insisting that it was a good idea. They didn't refuse to play it, neither Eddie Vedder refused to sing it. They simply didn't want it to become a single, and it didn't. As a result, the only singles coming out of Ten (1991) were Alive, Even flow and Jeremy.
I will never tire of this song  {#Hearteyes}

{#Good-vibes}
I admit, this group, and this guy's singing, sometimes vex me to no end; however, I find this, over the years, to've become treasurable.
Anyone ever hear that urban legend that spawned from Vedder's refusal to let this song be released as a single since it was "too personal"? Something about some campers singing it around a campfire being assaulted by Eddie? I wish I could remember the details. If there even were details. Might have just been something fabricated from whole cloth by an idiot friend...
 Hannio wrote:


Just like every one that went to a Lawrence Welk concert.  It's about the same level of schmaltz.

 
You mean the Potemkin Villagers, braindead housewives on Valium, and assorted uptight fundie Christians and Mormons that made up the typical Welk fanbase. A far cry I'd say from the usual PJ audience.
 justin4kick wrote:


Better listen to the studio version then with your headphones on in splendid isolation.

I bet it can't beat the experience those thousands of people had attending this concert.

 

Just like every one that went to a Lawrence Welk concert.  It's about the same level of schmaltz.
bad era in in my love life when this song was released. sometimes I cant' listen to it.
 {#Wink}yeswestslope wrote:
Must have been one helluva concert.

 


 Proclivities wrote:
 
I'm surprised anyone in the audience could've understood the lyrics well enough to sing them.

 
It sounds like most of the audience knew the lyrics quite well before they got there.
Most excellent, superb! {#Bounce}{#Bounce}{#Bounce}{#Bounce}{#Bounce}
 me too
Dazzerb wrote:
goosebumps

 

 


This song was very compelling in my teens and 20s, but in my 40s seems melodramatic. Maybe I just need a good ol' fashioned breakup to find the angst again...
 hayduke2 wrote:
fuckin' awesome man!  Those lucky folks singing loud that last chorus should each be recharged with deep zen energy every time they hear this, crank it LOUD!  : )

 
   I agree. Thought that was awesome!
Most Excellent!!!     {#Heartkiss}
Love this Album- Lukin is RAD version in it. Cheers.
goosebumps !
Lola
la la la la Lola… 
 dimar wrote:
I HAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAATE listening to the stupid audience singing!!!!  Glad I didn't pay a ton of money to see THAT show!   {#No}{#Arghhh}

 

Better listen to the studio version then with your headphones on in splendid isolation.

I bet it can't beat the experience those thousands of people had attending this concert.
 kurbowicz wrote:
I WAS AT THIS SHOW!!!

 
so jealous.

 
goosebumps

 
Probably my favorite PJ tune, but this version is just a little lacking in energy and emotion.
One of the greatest songs ever written. Gives you goosebumps when at a concert.
 Skydog wrote:

the off-beat clapping at some shows makes me want to walk out

 
Hell, I was there and it was mind blowing. Sorry we sucked.
I WAS AT THIS SHOW!!!
 dimar wrote:
I HAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAATE listening to the stupid audience singing!!!!  Glad I didn't pay a ton of money to see THAT show!   {#No}{#Arghhh}

 
the off-beat clapping at some shows makes me want to walk out
 dimar wrote:
I HAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAATE listening to the stupid audience singing!!!!  Glad I didn't pay a ton of money to see THAT show!   {#No}{#Arghhh}

 
Well stay at home and enjoy the record, you don't really understand what a show is for.
A real pearl!!!
I had a high-school girlfriend who loved this song. Fond memories.
I HAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAATE listening to the stupid audience singing!!!!  Glad I didn't pay a ton of money to see THAT show!   {#No}{#Arghhh}
Must have been one helluva concert.
magnificient live version
Wishing there was a PSD on my Roku, but unfortunately not. Just had to turn it off. Great lyrics, but the singer is so very awful.
fuckin' awesome man!  Those lucky folks singing loud that last chorus should each be recharged with deep zen energy every time they hear this, crank it LOUD!  : )
10! 10!  10!
Wow.  How did I miss Pearl Jam when they were young, new and fresh.  (Same way I missed Pink Floyd, Led Zeppelin, and Rush when I was younger, maybe.)  Glad they are still out there and relevant so I can catch up now.
Just one word needed to describe that song. GOOOOOOOOOODLIKE!
 ScottishWillie wrote:

Sound like a good gig to me.

Isn’t there a bylaw that states your obliged to have at least one sing along on every live album!?! 


I'm surprised anyone in the audience could've understood the lyrics well enough to sing them.
what a wonderful version of a wonderful song ! {#Clap}
always crank up this poetic-gnarly song of heartbreak that is a wicked blast to participate in
My shivery spine just insisted on a 10.  So that's what it gets..  10.
I don't think I've ever heard this version.  My favorite PJ song.  Thanks!
 Fabienne wrote
His voice gave me hope and pulled me down at the same time. 
 
I totally know what you mean
I listened to this song daily when I was about 15 and highly depressive. 
His voice gave me hope and pulled me down at the same time. 
Now I just feel soooo happy whenever I hear his voice. It's kind of a proof that I survived my adolescence {#Dance}


 scrubbrush wrote:

I love the audience sing-along. Gives me chills. wish I'd been there. just bumped from 9 to 10

 
Exactly!
I know that someday you'll have a beautiful life
I know you'll be a star
In somebody else's sky
But why, why, why can't it be
Why can't it be mine?
 sfearll wrote:

it's actually the sing-along that makes Pearl Jam one of the best bands to see live.. they're so generous to the audience, encouraging people to sing along, thanking them for the love.  Can you imagine how boring it would be to sing that song for the 600th time without enjoying the variation that every audience brings?  These guys rise above them all. 

 
Amen brother  - having experienced that dozens of times.
 bc wrote:
Wow.  This song started out and I thought, "What a delicate and well handled version of this song."  I was impressed by how they pulled it off live with some sensitivity, and I was beginning to think about looking up the live album that this came from.  Then I thought, "They can't ruin this — unless they do the cheesy audience sing along.  But they wouldn't."

And then, right on cue, they did.
Way to trash a good performance.
 

Sounds like a good gig to me.

Isn’t there a bylaw that states your obliged to have at least one sing along on every live album!?!

 bc wrote:
Wow.  This song started out and I thought, "What a delicate and well handled version of this song."  I was impressed by how they pulled it off live with some sensitivity, and I was beginning to think about looking up the live album that this came from.  Then I thought, "They can't ruin this — unless they do the cheesy audience sing along.  But they wouldn't."

And then, right on cue, they did.
Way to trash a good performance.
 
it's actually the sing-along that makes Pearl Jam one of the best bands to see live.. they're so generous to the audience, encouraging people to sing along, thanking them for the love.  Can you imagine how boring it would be to sing that song for the 600th time without enjoying the variation that every audience brings?  These guys rise above them all. 
...just godlike.
It's no, "make me fries", but quite good nonetheless. 
My rating of 8 trumps your 3 {#Lol}
 bc wrote:
Wow.  This song started out and I thought, "What a delicate and well handled version of this song."  I was impressed by how they pulled it off live with some sensitivity, and I was beginning to think about looking up the live album that this came from.  Then I thought, "They can't ruin this -- unless they do the cheesy audience sing along.  But they wouldn't."

And then, right on cue, they did.
Way to trash a good performance.




 

For me, it's the cheesy as Hell guitar solo at the end that kills an almost bearable PJ song...

I should hank that solo, however, because without it, I might have to give this song a high rating -- perhaps even a 3.
cool...  {#Bounce}
OK, I will keep listening to RP
 {#Yes} {#Dancingbanana_2} {#Jump}
 bc wrote:
Wow.  This song started out and I thought, "What a delicate and well handled version of this song."  I was impressed by how they pulled it off live with some sensitivity, and I was beginning to think about looking up the live album that this came from.  Then I thought, "They can't ruin this -- unless they do the cheesy audience sing along.  But they wouldn't."

And then, right on cue, they did.
Way to trash a good performance.




 
I love the audience sing-along. Gives me chills. wish I'd been there. just bumped from 9 to 10
Nice!
Wow.  This song started out and I thought, "What a delicate and well handled version of this song."  I was impressed by how they pulled it off live with some sensitivity, and I was beginning to think about looking up the live album that this came from.  Then I thought, "They can't ruin this -- unless they do the cheesy audience sing along.  But they wouldn't."

And then, right on cue, they did.
Way to trash a good performance.



No.
 Reckoner978 wrote:

Yessss - live version of Majesty is much more better than the studio one. And I see Majesty as 'Madrugada's Black' :) {#Sunny}

 
+1
 
oldsaxon wrote:

Yes, so few live ones can beat the studio but this, and Madrugada's "Majesty" are two off the top of my head, that do. If there ain't no audience, there just ain't no show...

 
Yessss - live version of Majesty is much more better than the studio one. And I see Majesty as 'Madrugada's Black' :) {#Sunny}
 DeemerDave wrote:
I'm not a big Pearl Jam fan but this is outstanding, better than the studio recording.

 
Yes, so few live ones can beat the studio but this, and Madrugada's "Majesty" are two off the top of my head, that do. If there ain't no audience, there just ain't no show...
 ziakut wrote:
I respect Eddie Vedder and Pearl Jam...but have never cared for his voice or the band for that matter. Just not my cuppa. I liked one of their earlier tunes 'Evenflow", but that's about it.

 

I hear you. I think some of their stuff is exceptional, but most of it is just meh. 

I will say that I have mad respect for their dedication to their fans. I saw them live a few years ago. Their ability to connect with an arena is unparalleled. 
 drife wrote:
I just can't get past this guy's voice sounding like Elmer Fudd.

  Gosh, I thought everyone knew that Eddy is the only surviving offspring of Elmer and Ms. Piggy.


I ignored Vetter for years and years and years, and now finally, I have seen the light! Now I can't get enough. I love this song but now it's rare that I hear Vetter do something I don't like. The dude is very talented!!!!
I'm not a big Pearl Jam fan but this is outstanding, better than the studio recording.
I respect Eddie Vedder and Pearl Jam...but have never cared for his voice or the band for that matter. Just not my cuppa. I liked one of their earlier tunes 'Evenflow", but that's about it.
 Biscobret wrote:

I just can't get past this guy's voice sounding like Elmer Fudd.


WTF, perhaps the most lame comment I have ever read on RP post.

 
OMG, perhaps the best comment I have ever read on RP post!






Insert obligatory "I hate Pearl Jam" comment, here.

 
I'm not sure I hear Elmer Fudd but the notion is actually pretty damned funny. Eddie--ya either love him or hate him. Personally I think he took singing lessons from a terminally drunk and sleep-deprived ex-boxer in the early stages of Alzheimer's. But that's just me. 

Thank God there are no ukuleles in this version.  
I smell a (s)hit in either scenario.

 
PA1749 wrote:
If Eddie Vedder farts into the microphone that would be a 9. Everything else is a 10!

 


That would be a 12
This shines so bright!
so that's what it feels like to have Stone and Mike play a ripping lead while you sing your heart out. .. thanks eddie, much love
Was kind of weird to turn on RP just as this track was in the middle of the crowd singalong.

Having been in the audience for about 20 of these at PJ shows over the year, I picked up that it was Black in about 2 seconds.

Imagine it could be disconcerting for someone elss.

And yes , goose bumps, emotional release --- very common occurrences at a PJ show.

They have some wide appeal but in particular they have an incredible emotional connection with a certain segment of young men of a certain age because the band are hard rocking real men who were in touchw with and with  expressed their deepest personal feelings and views of the world through their music.
Just about everything about this live Version is not as good as the studio version. Definetly not the audience singing along.
 lemmoth wrote:


Sorry - You can not love PJ and think this beautiful and somewhat different (unplugged and slower) version of this masterpiece is BORING.

 

Sure you can.
The audience sing-along gives me goosebumps. This has always been my favorite PJ song
Mostly hate this style of live recordings, but the crowd energy in this one is really something special.