Jeremy (5:45)

Cover of Ten

From Ten and 309 other releases

“Jeremy” is a song by the American band Pearl Jam. Written by bassist Jeff Ament and vocalist Eddie Vedder, the song was inspired by a newspaper article Vedder read about a kid who killed himself in front of his classmates. “Jeremy” was released as the third single from Pearl Jam’s debut album, Ten, (1991) in 1992. The song reached the number five spot on both the Mainstream and Modern Rock Billboard charts. “Jeremy” was included on Pearl Jam’s greatest hits album, rearviewmirror (greatest hits 1991-2003).

The song especially gained notoriety by way of its music video (directed by Mark Pellington and released in 1992), which was put into heavy rotation by MTV and became a hit. In 1993, the “Jeremy” video was awarded four MTV Video Music Awards, including Best Video of the Year.

The song is in the key of A, and intertwines the parallel modes of major and minor frequently. It features prominent usage of Ament’s 12-string Hamer bass guitar, which is pivotal to the sound of the introduction and end of the recording. The song starts off with the bassline and quiet harmonic notes also on the 12-string bass, and continues in a sedate vein until after the second chorus, when densely layered guitars and vocals gradually enter. At the end the instruments gradually fade out until all that is audible is a clean guitar and the 12-string bass, like the intro. Both instruments play a descending minor key melody, fading out with one single note.

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