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Pearl Jam performed at Madison Square Garden this past Sunday on the 21st anniversary of 9/11. Eddie Vedder took a moment during the show to honor the somber anniversary and the brave first responders of the terrorist attack.

Vedder delivered a five-minute speech where he touched on a number of points. The most poignant of them was about getting proper funding and healthcare to first responders still struggling with the effects of 9/11 and how the country came together following the attack.

The Pearl Jam frontman talked about meeting with first responders before the show and other activists that have fought for first responders to get proper healthcare. Vedder mentions an activist named John and an exchange they had.

“He said, ‘Let’s not make it political. It’s very basic: Just support healthcare for heroes. Treat heroes like they deserve to be treated,'” said Vedder. He then talked about speaking with another first responder who touched on the phrase “Never Forget.” The first responder said the phrase “is a bit of a bumper sticker at this point.”

“He told me 9/11 was obviously horrific, traumatic, despicable,” said Vedder. “But he says, in some ways, 9/12 was awesome. People came together as one. We were supported by the rest of the planet, almost every other country. And most importantly, in our country, we supported each other. There was a time when we supported each other.”

Vedder’s full remarks can be heard below.

 

9/11: 5 Inspiring Concert Tributes

In the wake of the September 11th terrorist attacks, the music world came together to help raise funds for those affected with two concerts:  America: A Tribute To Heroes, which aired on Fox, ABC, NBC and CBS on September 21, 2001 and The Concert For New York City, which aired on VH1 on October 20, 2001 from Madison Square Garden.

These shows provided some of the most moving performances in rock history and helped lift a mourning nation still grieving from such an incredible loss.  Here are five of our favorite performances.

  • Billy Joel - 'New York State of Mind' - America: A Tribute to Heroes

    The Piano Man’s ode to the “City That Never Sleeps” became an unexpected rallying cry and a song for comfort in the wake of 9/11, and it’s because of Joel’s performance of the song during America: A Tribute to Heroes.

  • Bruce Springsteen & The E Street Band - 'My City of Ruins' - America: A Tribute to Heroes

    The story of “My City of Ruins” is a unique one. Springsteen originally penned the tune in tribute to Asbury Park, N.J. as part of a Christmas charity show. The Boss would perform the song during America: A Tribute to Heroes and eventually record a studio version for his 2002 album The Rising.

  • Neil Young - 'Imagine' - America: A Tribute to Heroes

    Young provided a very moving cover of John Lennon’s “Imagine” during America: A Tribute to Heroes. Accompanied by a string section, it still causes goosebumps decades later.

  • Tom Petty & The Heartbreakers - 'I Won't Back Down' - America: A Tribute to Heroes

    “I Won’t Back Down” had been an anthem for years, but performed in this capacity, it took on a far deeper meaning.

  • The Who - 'Who Are You' - The Concert For New York City

    One of the most unexpected moments of The Concert For New York City was the set from The Who, which ended up stealing the show. Sadly, it would end up being one of the final high-profile shows from The Who before the untimely death of bassist John Entwistle in June 2002.

Erica Banas is a rock/classic rock news blogger who's well versed in etiquette and extraordinarily nice.