In 1992, Eddie Vedder met a girl in The Netherlands after a Pearl Jam show who gave him a ride to his hotel on the back of her bicycle. Twenty-seven years later, the two finally reunited.
This past Sunday, during a solo show in Amsterdam, Vedder asked the crowd if the woman who gave him that ride happened to be in attendance. While no one came up, the Dutch publication Het Parool tracked her down.
In an article published Tuesday, the woman, Valeska Custers, explained how her encounter with Vedder happened. When she was 23, she went to that 1992 Pearl Jam show to see the opening band, a Dutch group called City Pig Unit. She was friends with a member of that band, and they watched PJ’s set from backstage.
After Pearl Jam’s performance, Vedder and Custers started talking. “He was extremely shy, but I really felt a connection with him,” she says.
The pair later met up at a cafe, and after hours of discussion, Custers offered to call Vedder a taxi to his hotel. Instead, he asked if she could give him a ride on the back of her bike. She did, and after dropping him off, she went back home.
A follow-up Het Parool story then explains that, following the first article’s publication, a member of the string quartet accompanying Vedder on his European tour heard about it and forwarded it along to the grunge icon.
Days later, Custers got a call from Vedder’s manager asking if she could attend his show in Belgium Wednesday. She and her husband went, and she was reunited with Vedder backstage.
The two shook hands and hugged, and Vedder thanked her for the ride.
“You still have the same smile,” Vedder said.
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