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Former Pearl Jam Drummer Matt Chamberlain Won’t Attend Band’s Rock Hall Induction

Columbia Records
Columbia Records

Citing prior obligations, former Pearl Jam drummer Matt Chamberlain has opted not to attend the band’s Rock and Roll Hall of Fame induction.

One of a number of drummers in early Pearl Jam lineups, Chamberlain stepped in for Dave Krusen, who played on the group’s Ten LP, and held down the rhythm section for a run of dates with the band in 1991, during which time they filmed the video for “Alive.” Presented with the opportunity to stick around as a permanent member, he declined; as he later explained in an interview with the Seattle Times, he’d just gotten out of a gig with Edie Brickell and the New Bohemians, and was looking to settle down again.

“I toured in the van with them, played a bunch of clubs — I had a good time, definitely had a good time,” Chamberlain reflected. “They wanted me to join the band, but Edie had just broke up, I had just got off the road after touring for four years straight — I could not imagine doing it again. But I’m still real good friends with them.”

Those friendly feelings seem to be reflected in Chamberlain’s comments to Rolling Stone following the news that Pearl Jam — earlier under fire from ex-drummer Dave Abbruzzese for their failure to publicly acknowledge the members who’d contributed but weren’t being inducted — had issued an invitation to all their former drummers. Saying “work commitments” would keep him away, Chamberlain told the magazine, “I’m so happy they are getting honored by the Hall of Fame. They are good friends and total inspirations. I wish them all the best. Of course, I appreciate the shoutout.”

Since leaving the Pearl Jam lineup, Chamberlain has enjoyed a prolific and acclaimed career as a session drummer and recording artist; more recently, he toured with Soundgarden when drummer Matt Cameron — who maintains dual membership between both bands — had to bow out due to Pearl Jam commitments.

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