The Smallest Oceans Still Get Big, Big Waves
By Stefanie Huber
Pearl Jam has been a positive influence on so many for upwards of 25 years – musically, politically, and philanthropically. In honor of Small Business Saturday on November 26th, where consumers are encouraged to forgo large retail chains for their holiday shopping and support smaller, independently-owned pursuits, the spotlight is turned on some individuals who took their love of Pearl Jam a step beyond the recreational – they also incorporated that love into their small business.
Jewelry designer Tina Baginski created Pearl Girl Studio as a way to give back to the large concert-going and online community that surrounds Pearl Jam. While she has a diverse clientele, Tina estimates that approximately 70% of her creations end up in the hands of PJ fans. “Whether I donate my time to teach and create, or I donate pieces of jewelry, I am humbled by the fact that I can make a difference to a child or someone else struggling to make their way in the world,” Tina explains. “I owe that drive and determination to Pearl Jam.” Tina’s creations are available through Etsy (pearlgirlstudio) and pearlgirlstudio.com.
Graphic logo designer Matt Reno (mattrenologos.com) has been inspired by Pearl Jam in regards to his business ethics by donating some of his earnings to support good causes. “Pearl Jam has always been about using their talents to help others,” says Matt. “Whether supporting medical research, fighting for social justice, or inspiring others with their lyrics, Pearl Jam constantly works for good. Taking those cues, I strive to use my skills to help others as well. The clients I work with are generally nonprofits and small business owners.”
Rochelle Dallons is the CEO of Yield Bookkeeping Services, LLC (yieldbookkeeping.com), which provides full-service accounting for small businesses. Since starting up in 2013, her company now boasts over 100 clients. “Pearl Jam influenced the name of my business (named after the 1998 album ‘Yield’), and every chance I get I promote the band,” says Rochelle. “For instance, my hold music is Elderly Woman Behind The Counter In A Small Town. ‘I just wanna scream…HELLLLOOOO…”
Pearl Jam also boasts a significant shutterbug fan base. From Tanya Kang’s unique project Pearl Jam Fan Portraits (pearljamfanportraits.com), to Scott Rockvam’s nature-centric Lowlight Images (lowlight-images.com), to Matt Tackett’s travel/street/concert/event-based In Hiding Photography (inhidingphotography.com), they seek to capture life’s beautiful moments through the lens of the inspirational music and message of this truly unique band.
And finally, what kind of world would it be without good wine? What kind of PJ show would it be without wine, for that matter? We don’t wanna know. Luckily, we have Sleight of Hand Cellars (sofhcellars.com), so we never have to find out. Founded in 2007 by Trey Busch and Jerry and Sandy Solomon, their only goal "…has been to make world class wines while having the most fun that is legally possible.” The name of the business comes from a much-beloved Pearl Jam song from 2000’s album “Binaural,” and currently has tasting rooms in Seattle and Walla Walla, WA.
These are only a few drops from the vast ocean of Pearl Jam fans that have caught the band’s wave and ridden it to a place they probably did not expect when they experienced the first notes of the music all those years ago. If you are inclined to support small businesses this November 26th (and hopefully beyond), please consider supporting entrepreneurs like the ones featured here: members of a unique and joyous community of like-minded individuals that took their passion a step beyond just being a fan – they made it their life.