Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Tom Petty = A True Great

So, last night I am sitting at the counter, listening to Pandora Radio. I don’t really notice it until I am about to turn the page…. red freckles down the right side of the paper. It is of course Tom Petty’s fault. In my opinion, every one of his songs has a great beat and immediately lifts your mood; tranquility.

At this point I decided to indulge myself in a little of my own research. Tom Petty, now 61, was born in Gainesville, Florida. When he was only 17, he dropped out of high school to join the band, Mudcrutch. By 1975, when Petty was 25, the band had split up, but fortunately he met guitarist Mike Campbell, bassist Ron Blair, drummer Stan Lynch, and keyboardist Benmont Tench, a.k.a, “The Heartbreakers.” With the band, he achieved ultimate success and a Star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame at 7018 Hollywood Boulevard. Think “American Girl” and “Refugee.” In 1988, Petty joined his fellow music greats, George Harrison, Roy Orbison, Bob Dylan, and Jeff Lynn to form “The Traveling Wilburys.” According to, “this Wilbury environment [was] where five stars could enjoy an ego-free collaboration. Everybody sang, everybody wrote, everybody produced - and had great fun doing so.” They made great music, “End of the Line” and “Handle with Care” obviously take the cake from the Wilburys. I honestly cannot pick a favorite from the Hearbreakers though….

I grew up in a small town, where the air reeks of cow manure on hot, summer days and radio stations play English music but speak in French. If you heard a new hit, we finally heard it three months later. However, Petty always played on those stations and I grew up listening to his music. He always stayed with me through the times that I actually liked the Chili Peppers or when I thought “Oops I Did It Again” rocked. One thing is clear, I never wavered on liking his music. These are the types of artists who will always be remembered. I mean, a few years ago in 2006 when we still had pro basketball in this country, he even played the opening music for the NBA Playoffs; “Running Down a Dream.”

So I guess my whole point is this: Go to your Pandora account and create a “Tom Petty” station. You will not be disappointed, believe me. Last night I heard Dire Straits, the Grateful Dead, and Bob Seger on it…. They aren’t too bad either.

In closing I leave you with these words:

Well it's all right, even when push comes to shove
Well it's all right, if you got someone to love
Well it's all right, everything’ll work out fine
Well it's all right, were going to the end of the line.

Watch End of the Line:

Canadian Lou

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