Greatest Of All Tunes: TOM PETTY!

tom petty
My Greatest Of All Tunes feature is usually one song per artist, so lots of people (and variety) can be in the game. But we did a top 10 on Prince, and that was fun. I’m not going to do one for everyone—like I won’t do one for The Beatles, Aretha Franklin, Stevie Wonder, Eric Clapton, or any number of other artists that I adore.

But I will do one for Tom Petty because, hey, he’s a superstar. An extremely underrated songwriter and performer. A brilliant creator. And one of my all-time favorites. So I wanted to do a top ten. But I couldn’t. As i went through Petty’s catalog, I found too many excellent songs to limit myself—and if I did a top ten, half of it would have been off his Damn the Torpedoes album so I wouldn’t get to dig into his later, quieter work on Wildflowers.

So instead of doing ten songs, I’m doing five albums. The best of his 16 studio albums with The Heartbreakers, his three solo records, his three as a Traveling Wilbury, one with Mudcrutch, and his multiple live albums. These are the essential five Tom Petty albums, complete with covers. This means I can’t post covers of a lot of his best tunes (no Free Fallin!) , but you can’t have everything…

Let’s start….


#5 Hard Promises (1981)

TP and the Heartbreakers’ fourth album had its share of hits (“The Waiting”) but it’s best known for hosting the tune “Insider,” which would be the first of several songs Petty would use as an excuse to duet with Stevie Knicks of Fleetwood Mac, and which would pole vault him into a new level of fame. Like “Stop Draggin’ My Heart Around.”

The Waiting

The Waiting by Local H (direct link)

A Thing About You

Bonus! (Not on the album)

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