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Pearl Jam Joined Onstage by Jay-Z at Made in America Festival

PearlJamJayZ
Samir Hussein / Jason Kempin, Getty Images

It was a rock and rap collision last night (Sept. 2) in the City of Brotherly Love when Pearl Jam were joined onstage by rapper (and festival creator/curator) Jay-Z for his 2004 smash hit ’99 Problems.’ Pearl Jam were headlining the final night of the first-ever Made in America Festival, held in Philadelphia, when this meeting of musical minds took place.

Fan-filmed footage of the rapper tearing through his song while being sonically supported by Pearl Jam can be viewed below. Pearl Jam are titans of rock ‘n’ roll and the same can be said about Jay-Z in the urban and hip-hop world, so this was quite a cultural collision on par with Aerosmith teaming up with Run-DMC for ‘Walk This Way.’ Yeah, we said it.

After Jay-Z left the stage – upon chest-bumping with and hugging members of Pearl Jam -  the band launched into their cover of Neil Young‘s ‘Rockin’ in the Free World.’

Few bands can seamlessly shift from playing riffs for a rapper to covering a classic rock anthem, but this is Pearl Jam we’re talking about. They owned it on all fronts.

We’re thinking that Pearl Jam and Jay-Z should discuss a recorded collaboration since their onstage chemistry crackled.

Thanks to YouTube and modern digital technology, this “You hadda be there moment” was anything but.

Watch Pearl Jam + Jay-Z Perform ’99 Problems’

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