Pearl Jam frontman Eddie Vedder has long been a highly vocal supporter of the West Memphis Three, a trio of Arkansas men convicted as teenagers in 1993 for a series of child murders they did not commit, even going so far as to pen one of his most heart-wrenching love songs about one of them. Raising money and awareness during the difficult time reaped incredible rewards, as Damien Echols, Jessie Misskelley Jr. and Jason Baldwin were freed in August 2011 after spending more than 18 years in prison.
In an exclusive video from Diffuser, Vedder talks about writing the gorgeous ukulele ballad (among this PJ maniac’s three favorite Vedder compositions), his contribution to the soundtrack for ‘West of Memphis,’ a new documentary about the case. The song, which appears on Eddie’s 2011 solo album Ukulele Songs, was written for Lorri Davis, Echols’ devoted wife. Davis had spent a decade working to clear her husband’s name, and the song is a goosebump-inducing reflection of her struggle and dedication to her husband.
As Vedder explains, he recorded Satellite years ago, back in the “pre-cell phone” era, which allowed for a certain moment to take place at the end of one version of the song that’s downright awesome in its serendipity. Watch the video to learn more.
As for that new Pearl Jam album? Later this year, hopefully. Vedder says the band’s about halfway done putting it together.