I first heard this song played live in 1998 in Knoxville, TN. We road tripped from Maryville to Knoxville – my ex-husband, his best friend, my best friend, and myself. To this day, that trip, and especially the night of the concert, remains one of the best memories I have during that time in my life. Everything about it was just perfect.
There are two 8×10 framed photos that hang over my guitars, snapshots of Pearl Jam on stage. They were taken by my friend, who was lucky enough to snag one 3rd row seat for the show. They aren’t the best shots in the world, but they are reminders of a happy time.
My friend and I got out the scissors and glue and made a sign for the friend sitting in the 3rd row to hold up that simply said “Patriot” in hopes that we could get the band to play it. When Eddie acknowledged our sign during the show (though they didn’t play our song), it was an incredible feeling.
A lot of people don’t get my connection to Pearl Jam, but my love for them has remained strong over the years. In a way, they have provided the soundtrack to my life, well at least since the teen years. Each song connects me to a memory, a piece of my life, moments of joy and heartbreak.
Hard To Imagine has kind of become my song over the years. It can mean different things to me at different times in my life. I’ve put meaning into this song that I doubt anyone else would ever understand. When I listen to it, I feel every note, almost as if it is a part of me. It would totally rock my socks if they played it Monday night, when I’ll be standing before them once again listening to pieces of my life float by.