top of page

Jeff Ament

He is without a doubt one of the most recognizable and influential figures in the Seattle grunge scene.

His name is Jeff Ament and we really want to tell you some interesting details about him:

(Photo: Kevin Mazur)

Ament was born on March 10, 1963 as Jeffrey Allen Ament in Havre, Montana, USA.

2. He is the eldest of 5 brothers and sisters.

3. Ament grew up in the town of Big Sandy in Montana with only 700 residents. The town was so small that his father served both as the post office manager and as the mayor.

4. Jeff was a very athletic kid and participated in basketball and soccer teams at school.

5. Upon graduating from high school in 1981 he began studying art and graphic design at the University of Montana.

6. Ament also played on the university basketball team, which is also his favorite sport.

7. He left the university and moved to Seattle in 1983 after the university abolished the graphic design track.

8. At the same time, Ament realized his love for music. One of the first bands he played was called "Deranged Diction".

9. In 1984, after the band "Deranged Diction" disbanded, Ament was asked by Mark Arm and Steve Turner to join the "Green River" band.

10. Later, guitarist Stone Gossard also joined the band, in order to allow Mark to concentrate on singing.

(Photo: Charles Peterson)

11. Ament and "Green River" released their first EP "Come on Down" in 1985, already then the collaboration between Ament and Gusard began to work, with the duo composing most of the EP songs.

12. In 1987 the band released a second EP called "Dry as a Bone", this was the first release of the mythical Sub Pop label so identified with Grunge.

13. In the publications for the promotion of the EP, the label first mentioned the concept of Grunge in the following words:

"Ultra-loose grunge that destroyed the morals of a generation".

14. In 1988, "Green River" released their only full-length album "Rehab Doll". During this period the relationship within the band was murky, with Ament and Gusard on one side and Mark Aram and the others on the other.

(Photo: Charles Peterson)

15. These controversies led to the dissolution of "Green River", but its place in the history of music remains as one of the first and most influential bands in the Grunge style.

16. In 1988, Ament and his "Green River" friends Gusard and Fairweather formed the band "Mother Love Bone". The three will be joined by drummer Greg Gilmore as well as a talented and charismatic character named Andrew Wood who came from the band "Malfunkshun".

17. Ament and the members of "Mother Love Bone" created a strong buzz in Seattle and soon the record companies started courting them. As early as November 1988, the band signed a contract with Mercury Records / Stardog, a subsidiary of PolyGram.

18. On March 23, 1989, Ament and the band released an EP with six songs called "Shine", making "Mother Love Bone" the first band in Seattle to release an album with a major record label.

19. At the end of 1989, Ament and the band members returned to the studio in California to record their debut album "Apple". The album included 13 songs and was scheduled to be released in March 1990, but just days before the planned release of the album, Wood passed away as a result of an overdose.

(Photo: Mother Love Bone)

20. Wood's death of course dismantled the band but also threatened to dismantle the friendships between Ament and Gusard. Ament even played briefly with "War Babies", before recovering and returning to collaborate with Gusard.

21. The two added Gosard's childhood friend Mike McCready and the three tried to form a band.

22. While searching, the members of the emerging band were invited to join a project in memory of Andrew Wood led by "Soundgarden" band leader Chris Cornell and called "Temple of the Dog".

(Photo: Tumblr)

23. In 1990, Ament, Gusard, and Creedy, along with singer Eddie Vedder, formed the band, "Pearl Jam".

24. In August 1991, the band releases their debut album "Ten" which will become one of the great albums of the nineties and in general.

25. Ament, co-wrote the songs for the album and among other things wrote the music for one of his biggest hits "Jeremy".

26. It is interesting to note that Jeff almost left the band before the release of the album "Ten", all due to an argument he had with Gusard over the song "Brother". Ament very much wanted the song to be included on the album, but Gusard objected and the song did not go into the final version. The song was finally released on the 2003 album "Lost Dogs" as well as on the album's 20th-anniversary release.

27. Here it is worth noting that Ament's talent in art and design that he began to study at the university was reflected already in the first "Pearl Jam" shirts that were designed by him.

28. Also, his very special handwriting adorns the inner covers and lyrics in some of the band's albums. The very unique writing style has become the “font” most identified with Seattle’s grunge albums.

(Photo: Paul Bergen)

29. Ament will later establish with his brother Barry an art design company called "Ament founded Ames Bros." The company will be responsible, among other things, for the design of Pearl Jam's posters and covers.

30. The company will also design the cover and box cover album released after Chris Cornell's death in 2018.

31. In 1992, Ament played his part in the cult film about the grunge scene in Seattle - "Singles".

32. He was also employed by the film's director - Cameron Crowe, as the artistic director who was in charge of the set design.

33. Moreover, the actor Matt Dillon who plays Cliff in the movie, wore Jeff's real clothes and all the items in Cliff's apartment belong to Jeff.

34. And if that's not enough, during the filming of the movie, Jeff designed a real tape with fictitious names of songs on it. Cornell responded to Jeff's challenge and composed amazing classics to the fictitious songs that Jeff gave them names. These songs include "Flutter Girl", "Seasons" and "Spoonman".

35. On "Spoonman" Emment even got credit as part of the cover of Soundgarden's "Superunknown" album which we wrote about just a few days ago.

36. In 1993, Ament together with "Pearl Jam" will release their second album "Vs". Which broke the sales record of an album for the first week (or rather five days), and he held that title for 5 years !!!

37. A year later Ament and "Pearl Jam" released the album "Vitalogy". Ament wrote, among other things, the music for the song "Nothingman".

38. Ament's contribution to the writing of the songs in "Pearl Jam" was in most cases limited to the writing of the melodies. Starting with the band's fifth album "Yeild", Ament also began writing some of the lyrics.

39. Ament plays guitar in two of the "Pearl Jam" songs for which he also wrote the music. "Smile" from the album "No Code" and "Bee Girl" which is only included in the compilation album "Lost Dogs".

40. Jeff is also the lead singer on two "Pearl Jam" songs - "Sweet Lew" which was also released only as part of the compilation album "Lost Dogs" as well as in the cover version of the Ramones song - "I Just Want To Have Something To Do".

41. Ament released with "Pearl Jam" 12 studio albums including "Gigaton" released in 2020 and  "Dark Matter" released in 2024.

42. Ament is known for his fondness for strange hats, some of which were designed by his ex-partner.

43. In 1995, Ament and his friends accompanied "Pearl Jam" to grunge godfather Neil Young on the album "Mirror Ball" and the supporting tour.

44. In 2008 Emment started his solo career with his debut album "Tone". The album featured songs that Jeff wrote during the 12 years prior to the album's release.

45. Ament will later release three more solo albums "While My Heart Beats" in 2012, "Heaven / Hell" in 2018 which also featured his friends Mike McCreedy and Matt Cameron and "I Should Be Outside" in 2021.

46. Ament was also a partner in other bands such as "Three Fish" with whom he released two albums in 1996 and 1999 and "RNDM" with whom he also released two albums in 2012 and 2016.

47. Ament was also a partner in the "Tres Mts" project. Which included members from King's X and Fastbacks, among others.

48. In 2004, Ament climbed to the summit of Mount Kilimanjaro with the aim of assisting the Association for Children in Distress.

49. Ament is known as a very versatile bass player and he likes to diversify his playing with unusual instruments like portals bass, contrabass, and 12-string bass.

50. In 2017, Ament entered the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame with "Pearl Jam".

Follow us on Facebook or Subscribe to our website

"Face/Off" - Israel's Rock Blog & Podcast


Enjoying the Blog? Subscribe to get it right to your mail!

Thank you !!

bottom of page