Tuesday, October 3, 2017

Video Of The Week: Tom Petty

Tom Petty died last night, but because we live in a 24-hour news cycle where tweets count as "breaking news", the story was ahead of itself, reports of his demise making the rounds on social media while he was still technically alive, angering his family, friends and bandmates:
from Instagram
How sad a world are we living in? TMZ were once again the only ones to get the news right, but instead of leaving it at that, they actually released the audio of the 911 call his wife made when she found his body. For fuck's sake.

This does, as AnnaKim Violette Petty mentioned, overshadow and disrespect the man and the artist's oeuvre. We're talking about a Rock And Roll Hall of Famer (class of 2002), yet another lost member of The Traveling Wilburys (Roy Orbison and George Harrison had passed away before him, Bob Dylan and Jeff Lyne of Electric Light Orchestra fame remain), and a very successful songwriter whose career spanned five decades.

Some of the songs you may know him from include Refugee, Learning To Fly, Free Fallin', It's Good To Be King, Into The Great Wide Open, Don't Do Me Like That, Runnin' Down A Dream, All Of Nothin', Mary Jane's Last Dance, You Wreck Me, and a terrific and perfect cover of Patti Smith's So You Wanna Be A Rock'N'Roll Star.

Oh, and this tremendous piece of 1980s music called I Won't Back Down that I've sung in concert over a dozen times:

Yes, there are a few cameos in the video directed by David Leland, including Lynne (co-songwriter on most of 1989's Full Moon Fever, Petty's first official solo album), Harrison (who played guitar on it), Mike Campbell (lead guitarist of both Petty's band The Heartbreakers and on this record) and former Beatles drummer Ringo Starr, who does not play on the actual recording (those are actually Phil Jones' beats). Also missing in the video is Heartbreakers bassist Howie Epstein doing backing vocals.

Notable covers of this song include Pearl Jam's rendition from the Live At The Gorge set, but young'uns will know it best by Sam Smith stealing it for his Grammy-winning Stay With Me...

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