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Persistence Alone

My grandfather grew up in a small apartment in Lawrence, Massachusetts with fourteen older brothers and sisters. His mother stayed at home to watch after the family, and his father worked in a dry goods store.

His parents came from Italy to Ellis Island with no money. He grew up poor.

When he was ten or so he began to work at the dry goods store as well. His job was mainly to run into the rat infested basement and get tins of spaghetti to bring upstairs. He was allowed to keep a portion of the money, but most of it went to his parents.

Yield - Pearl Jam

On More from a 3 Minute Record

August 28, 1998 is a day that forever changed my life. That night, in the late summer, I was introduced to live music when my dad took me to my first concert to see Pearl Jam on their "Yield Tour" in Philadelphia Camden, NJ. Unlike many of my other friends who attended concerts before their 10th birthdays, I have no reason to be embarrassed of this first in my life.

This post is not about the album. This is about the tour that happened in support of the album. I still have very vivid memories of my first concert, and I would like to put them into words before the haze of years past begins to erode them. I don't remember when it was decided that I would be the one accompanying my dad to the show, but I do remember the lead-up to the show. I remember Dad getting home from work, dialing up the interwebs (not as easy as it is now), and trying to point to and explain things that, at the time, I barely understood.

"You see here? Mudhoney and Iggy Pop are opening."

I had no idea what that meant, but I smiled, nodded, and assumed that the band pre-announced the first two songs they would play for every night of their tour (it was a learning experience for sure). The day of the show we went to KFC and picked up a bigger box of chicken than I knew was offered by the Colonel. We drove about an hour to Camden, ample time to make the chicken a perfect, tailgating lukewarm.

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