Mad Season are gigging at the end of the month, as part of the Seattle Symphony’s Sonic Evolution series; the event is taking place at Benaroya Hall on 30 January, and will feature orchestral and solo arrangements of some of their songs.*
It’s not possible for the full Mad Season line up to get back together, Layne Staley and John Baker Saunders sadly no longer being with us, so Mike McCready and Barrett Martin are being helped out by some quite handy Seattle musicians: Chris Cornell, Matt Cameron and Duff McKagan (part of the 80s underground scene in his native town before moving to LA, joining Guns N’ Roses and achieving some degree of success – musically, commercially and in not bludgeoning Axl Rose to death with his bass).**
The evening will also feature the debut of McCready’s symphonic ‘Waking the Horizon’, arranged by Scott Teske. The Pearl Jam website has posted a discussion between McCready and the Seattle Symphony’s conductor Ludovic Morlot about the event (warning: peppy interviewer at the start). McCready is a sublime guitarist, but when the discussion gets on to composition, it feels as though Morlot behind the piano is gently providing a music lesson, something McCready himself somewhat bashfully recognises.
The show is sold out (unsurprisingly), but you can enter to win a pair of tickets and the chance to meet all the musos backstage (but only if you’re in the US; grrrr). All proceeds go to the Vitalogy Foundation.
* ‘River of Deceit’, ‘I Don’t Know Anything’ and ‘Long Gone Day’.
** McKagan plays alongside Martin in Walking Papers.