In Cameron Crow’s movie, Pearl Jam 20, the guys in Mother Love Bone are waiting backstage with Chris Cornell to meet Ian Asbury after the Cult’s Seattle show in 1989. Ian had invited me to come to Seattle from Spokane to meet these bands he said would soon be huge. After the show, we all got onto the Cult’s bus, me sitting on Ian’s lap as the driver passed slowly through red lights to the Sorrento Hotel. I had just turned 21 and ordered one of my first drinks in the red velvet room of the Sorrento lobby, in a circle of longhairs talking about motorcycles, the places they were going next in the world, and all that was possible. I remember thinking, this is what I want to do with the rest of my life. I was next to Andy Wood and Bruce Fairweather, who would become my first Seattle friends, along with Bruce’s future wife Stephanie. They would graciously invite me to stay in their apartment above a grocery store near green lake before I finally moved to the city.


Bruce Fairweather, Jason Everman, Jeff Ament, Andy Wood, Stone Gossard, Ian Astbury, Jamie Stewart, Chris Cornell, Greg Gilmore. Photo: Jeesse Higman 1989


I was wearing one of my painted leather jackets and Bruce asked me if I could paint Stephanie‘s face on his 1967 strata caster. I was overwhelmed with college but painted the rays of her illuminated face over the dark sky at nights after my homework. Bruce and Stephanie got married and are still together, the guitar ended up in the rock ‘n’ roll Hall of Fame, mother love bone would be my introduction to live music in Seattle and Andy’s spirit of Love Rock is still my purpose in art.


Rock And Roll Hall of Fame -Cleveland, OH. Photo: Zeke Tanny


Andrew Wood Memorial Painting by Jesse Higman