Jeff Ament is an American musician, songwriter, and artist, best known as the bassist and founding member of the Seattle-based rock band Pearl Jam. He was born on March 10, 1963, in Havre, Montana.
Ament’s early musical influences came from the punk rock scene of the late 1970s and early 1980s, particularly the bands Black Flag and the Minutemen. He played bass in various punk bands throughout his youth, including Deranged Diction and Rottweiler.
In 1987, Ament moved to Seattle and became involved in the city’s emerging music scene. He formed the band Green River with future members of Pearl Jam, Mark Arm and Stone Gossard, and contributed bass and songwriting to the band’s two EPs and one full-length album. After Green River disbanded in 1988, Ament and Gossard formed the band Mother Love Bone with vocalist Andrew Wood, which released one album, “Apple,” in 1990.
Following Wood’s death from a drug overdose in 1990, Ament and Gossard formed Pearl Jam with vocalist Eddie Vedder and guitarist Mike McCready. The band released their debut album, “Ten,” in 1991, which became a commercial and critical success and helped to popularize grunge music in the early 1990s.
Ament has continued to play bass and contribute songwriting to Pearl Jam throughout their career, which has spanned over three decades and produced over ten studio albums. He is known for his melodic basslines and innovative use of effects pedals, which have helped to shape the sound of alternative and grunge rock.
In addition to his work with Pearl Jam, Ament has also been involved in various side projects and collaborations over the years. He formed the band Three Fish with musician Robbi Robb in the mid-1990s, which released two albums. He has also released several solo albums and worked as a producer for other artists, including the Afghan Whigs and Joseph Arthur.
Outside of music, Ament is also a visual artist and has created numerous album covers, concert posters, and other artwork for Pearl Jam and other bands. He is a co-founder of the skateboarding company Skate Mental and has designed skateboards and other merchandise for the company.
Ament has been open about his struggles with addiction and mental health and has been an advocate for various social and political causes over the years. He has been involved in various charity events and benefit concerts and has spoken out in support of issues such as environmentalism and gun control.
In summary, Jeff Ament is a highly respected and influential bassist, songwriter, and artist who has played a significant role in the success of Pearl Jam and the Seattle music scene. His bass playing is characterized by melodic and innovative lines, and his songwriting has helped shape the sound of alternative and grunge rock. He is also a talented visual artist and has been an advocate for various social and political causes over the years.