The guys in Pearl Jam have earned plenty of awards and accolades and played for countless millions of people. But only one of the band members can claim the honor of having not one, but two baseball bobbleheads crafted in their honor.
“Who would have known that in the history of my band, one of us would be a bobblehead,” laughs guitarist Mike McCready. “I don’t have a signature guitar.”
The bobblehead was commissioned for a special event Friday night at Safeco Field, when the Mariners take on the Chicago Cubs. It’s a benefit for the Crohn’s and Colitis Foundation of America. Mike first learned he had Crohn’s over 20 years ago.
“It’s just insane how painful this is and I was embarrassed about it for a long time and now I don’t care about it anymore and I just want to talk about it and shed some light on Crohn’s and Colitis,” Mike says.
Mike says he wants kids especially to know they don’t have to suffer in isolation and silence with the painful gastrointestinal disorders. He wants to let them know that “hey, I can be in a big rock and and I can do this. And it can be embarrassing at times. But you don’t let the disease define you; you define the yourself.”
Mike will be playing the national anthem before the game, something he’s done several times for his beloved Mariners.
“I’m honored to do it, especially at Safeco.”
He admits it can be a bit nerve-racking, playing solo in front of thousands without the rest of Pearl Jam by his side.
“You want to do it right, I want to do it to the best of my ability, but I also want to be able to not think about it,” he says. “You want to do it respectfully, but I also want to have my flavor to it.”
To get a Mike McCready bobblehead, you have to buy tickets through the Mariners website by Thursday afternoon at 5 p.m.
As for the band, Mike says they’re just putting the finishing touches on their highly-awaited new album. There’s no release date set, but the recording is done and the mixing and album artwork are just about completed.
“We’re very excited about it, we’re happy that we kind of got through the process of a two-year, on-and-off process of writing this record and recording. It’s got good energy to it and I’m excited,” he says.
Mike also promises the band will play Seattle again, sometime. But despite my badgering, he wouldn’t offer up any further details.
“We’ll be back, I promise you. We miss our Seattle crowds. We just have to do it right and we’ll figure it out.”