Tuesday, June 16, 1970

Musical Artist - Petty, Tom

Tom Petty was an American musician who was a fixture in popular music from his first top forty hit breakdown in 1977, until his death in 2017. Along the way, Petty, with his band the Heartbreakers, turned out hit after hit including I Need to Know, Refugee, Don't Come Around Here No More, You Got Lucky, Free Fallin', Running Down a Dream, learning to Fly, Into the Great Wide Open, Mary Jane's Last Dance, and numerous others. Petty was also well-known for his collaborations, including the songs Insider and Stop Draggin' My Heart Around with Stevie Nicks, and his work with the supergroup the Traveling Wilburys, which also included Roy Orbison, George Harrison, Bob Dylan, and Jeff Lynne. Petty and the Heartbreakers also performed with Johnny Cash on Cash's Grammy winning album Unchained.

In addition to his music career, Petty had a handful of small parts as an actor. His first appearance on film was in the movie FM, but his most memorable role was a small part in the movie The Postman. Petty also had a recurring part playing himself on the Gary Shandling Show and also appeared on Gary Shandling's other show The Larry Sanders Show. Petty was also famous for his staunch defense of the rights of artists, and was involved in several legal disputes with recording labels, including one in which he refused to have his contract transferred without his consent, and another in which he objected to a proposed increase in the price of the album Hard Promises.

Petty died on October 2, 2017 of an accidental prescription drug overdose. After his death, his family revealed that he had been suffering from a number of maladies including emphysema and a hip fracture and that his overdose was likely the result of trying to alleviate the nigh unbearable pain that resulted from them. Petty left behind a forty year musical legacy and an indelible mark on the world of pop music.

Petty has a website named Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers, and can also be found on Twitter.

Musical Monday Selections:

10/09/17: Learning to Fly
10/16/17: Southern Accents
01/29/18: You Got Lucky

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