KEXP Exclusive Interview: Photographer Lance Mercer on Pearl Jam

Troy and Lance

KEXP’s DJ Troy Nelson and legendary local photographer Lance Mercer

Tonight, Friday, April 7th, Seattle’s own Pearl Jam are being inducted into the Rock n’ Roll Hall of Fame in a ceremony at Barclays Center in New York. (Other inductees include Joan Baez, Electric Light Orchestra, Journey, Tupac Shakur, and Yes.) HBO will air the event later this month on April 29th, but you can follow KEXP on Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook as our own DJ Troy Nelson will be live on the scene!

Can you tell we’re a little excited about Pearl Jam’s upcoming honor? We’ve been fans of the band since back when they were Mookie Blaylock and we were KCMU. While the band were getting their start, a young photographer was also taking his: Lance Mercer. Starting out with a “crappy” (his words!) Pentax K1000 he picked up from Kmart, a teenage Mercer was in the audience, catching the burgeoning punk scene, which evolved into “grunge.” From 1991 to 1995, he was Pearl Jam’s official photographer, heading out on tour with them around the world. In this intimate chat with DJ Troy Nelson (incidentally, his son-in-law!), Mercer relates stories of the late Andrew Wood, Malfunkshun, Mother Love Bone, and watching the rise of Pearl Jam. Listen below:

All photos below by Lance Mercer
Audio edit by Robert Patterson

KEXP celebrates Pearl Jam‘s induction into the Rock n’ Roll Hall of Fame on the air, Friday, April 7th, from 6 AM to 6 PM. Tune in for interview clips, rare tracks, covers, and all your favorites from these local legends.

Pearl Jam

Pearl Jam, Seattle 1992

Pearl Jam

Mookie Blaylock, Off Ramp 1991

Pearl Jam

Mookie Blaylock, Seattle Center Mural Amphitheatre 1991

Pearl Jam

Eddie Vedder, hanging out at the “Drop in the Park” show in Seattle, 1992

Pearl Jam

Pearl Jam, Vancouver 2006

Pearl Jam

Pearl Jam and Neil Young, Ireland 1993

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