For a brief stretch in the 1990s, before they helped change music history and make flannel cool, Pearl Jam briefly went by the name “Mookie Blaylock.” Yes, that Mookie Blaylock. The same one who played point guard for the University of Oklahoma during the Billy Ball craze of the 1980s. The name didn’t last long – you can read the back story behind it here – but to pay homage to Mookie, the Seattle rockers named their debut album after his jersey number. That album was “10,” and it helped changed the future and landscape of rock and roll.
Well, it looks like that’s not the only weird basketball-related connection the band has with Oklahoma.
On Wednesday Night, Pearl Jam played a concert at Time Warner Cable Arena in Charlotte for their Fall 2013 Tour. It’s the same tour that will make a stop in Oklahoma City later this month.
The Charlotte Observer published a review of the concert, which includes a strange note about Oklahoma City:
Vedder’s patter was kept to a minimum, but left an impression.
He made light of the fact that Pearl Jam hadn’t been through Charlotte in 10 years: “To be honest, we might be a bit upset because you have a basketball team and we don’t,” he said, lamenting the SuperSonics’ move to Oklahoma City in 2008.
Through the far-reaching arms of the Ogle Mole Network, we’ve acquired video of Eddie’s “lamenting.” Let’s say he’s not too happy with all those fuckers in Oklahoma City.
Check it out:
Come on, Eddie. If you’re going to trash our city and our championship caliber NBA basketball team that you no longer have, at least get the name right or sing about it with your ukulele. Calling them “The Thunders” would be like saying your favorite Pearl Jam song is Jeremies or Blacks. It just doesn’t sound right.
I’ve mentioned this before, but it doesn’t bother me that hardcore SuperSonics fans like Eddie Vedder and Macklemore or whatever dislike Oklahoma City. I guess I don’t blame them. We did heartlessly take their beloved basketball team. Imagine how you’d feel if Warren Buffet bought the Thunder and then moved them to Omaha. I’m sure it hurts enough to lose your team to a different town, but to seem them bolt to a lesser city would burn as bad as Pearl Jam’s new album.
Anyway, I think we should have a little fun with this. Maybe we can arrange to have Rumble rappel down from the ceiling of the Peake during the guitar solo in “Alive.” I’m sure the band would get a kick out of that. Or better yet, what if we all wore blue Thunder playoff t-shirts and chanted “O-K-C” whenever they played any song released after Yield. That’s actually a pretty damn good idea. We should do it.