Reporting Tim Kephart
TAMPA (CBSMiami) – Pearl Jam singer Eddie Vedder has never shied away from politics and he’s no signing any tunes praising Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney this year.
Vedder performed at a fundraiser for President Barack Obama Thursday in Tampa and said he was upset over Romney’s comments that 47 percent of Americans consider themselves victims and are entitled to government help.
“It’s very upsetting to hear a presidential candidate be so easily dismissive of such a ginormous amount of the population,” Vedder told the Obama donors. He said if Romney were to win the White House, “none of those 47 percent of people would have a voice.”
Vedder told the audience that at one point he struggled to make ends meet and said a government training program helped him become a security guard in San Diego. He said that job helped support him while he worked to become a rock star as well.
“It was that job that allowed me to also afford the guitars and tape recorder and microphones I needed to let me afford keep working on music,” he said. “It was also the job I reluctantly left to move up to Seattle for less pay, in order to join a band. It all worked out.”
Vedder performed a four-song acoustic set: “Rise,” ”Without You,” a cover of James Taylor’s “Millworker” and a cover of Neil Young’s “Rockin’ in the Free World.”
At one point, Vedder broke out a Hawaiian-made ukulele and joked, “It’s got a little birth certificate right in there.”
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