46-year-old Rhode Island native Brian Farias is a charter member of the Ten Club, Pearl Jam’s longtime fan group. He’s seen the band 108 times. He’s been with the band even before they were Pearl Jam, back in the Mother Love Bone days. And on June 27, Farias won the dream of a lifetime: he got to write the band’s setlist for their show in Amsterdam.
Farias won the contest as part of the Ten Club and was flown out to Amsterdam to meet the group. On the plane ride over, he began work on the setlist, balancing “his own ‘selfish’ desires with songs that audience members would enjoy, while also taking into consideration what the band was capable of playing.”
Pearl Jam fans are calling the setlist “the greatest” of the band’s history (and we all know how far their memory stretches back). Farias included deep cuts like “Alone” (B-side to Vs. single “Go”) and “Crown of Thorns” (a rarely-played Mother Love Bone song) along with crowd favorites. He even got the band to do Vitalogy oddity “Bugs.” Eddie Vedder plays accordion on the original, but without one on tour, Vedder learned the part on guitar instead.
Pearl Jam ended up playing “90 to 95 percent” of Farias’s requests. “It was like programming your iPod and then Pearl Jam show up in your yard and play it for you.” [Rolling Stone]