Today, Brobot spotted Eddie Vedder performing a private “inside-the-tube” concert for Laird Hamilton. Onlooker Dave Kalama confirms this feat, adding, “They were getting huge shacks! Laird was slotting into massive, heaving waves with ease, mesmerized by Eddie. And, Vedder’s vocals in the barrel were unstoppable.”
At one point in the never-before-performed “concert,” Laird stopped dragging his paddle on the roof of the tube long enough to use the paddle for a cranking air guitar solo. Vedder smiled at the oarsman, so synced in with his host that Vedder could seemly hear the riff that Laird was laying down.
Natives of this Polynesian secret spot fell out of trees, so entranced by the sweet music that the act of harvesting coconuts proved impossible.
The two men first met on the set of “Iconoclasts,” a Sundance Channel documentary series that places two disparate celebrities face to face. In 2007 Vedder traveled to Hamilton’s island home and the pair quickly became friends. Vedder painted Hamilton’s over-size likeness, and they eventually hugged (http://www.sundancechannel.com/iconoclasts/#/episode/210227772).
During a beautiful drive together, Vedder pontificated on what keeps Hamilton in the moment when he’s riding giant waves. Hamilton quickly suggested, “Having a good song in my head, that’ll be helpful.”
Full of praise for his new friend, Vedder said, “Laird is realizing what kind of magic this planet holds.” And knowing a bit of magic himself, Vedder shrunk himself to baby-sized proportions. Amazingly, this had no effect on his vocal range. Not only did Vedder write a song to keep Hamilton’s next big-wave season grounded, he wrote a whole concert. But the miniature Vedder decided to go one better, and allowed himself to be placed on the nose of Hamilton’s stand-up paddle board (SUP) for the first big session of the year.
News of their success quickly reached the island of Bali, however, where the Rip Curl Search WCT event was taking place. Eight-time world champion Kelly Slater stood the possibility of furthering his bid for a ninth title at this venue, but word of Vedder and Hamilton’s duet apparently rattled the champ and he went down to a low seed competitor by the name of Tiago Peres. “Slater and Vedder were friends first,” explains one knowledgeable source. “Probably closer at one point than Hamilton and Vedder are now, and Vedder never did anything like this for Slater. That kind of news can definitely affect your game.”
It could be that professional jealousy isn’t only confined to Slater, as Hamilton’s one-time tow partner Dave Kalama has reportedly contacted Slater for a tow event of their own.