Heartbreaking, on many levels, 1982’s record-hugging insert to Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers release on Backstreet Records, Long After Dark. I was slow to warm to the Tom Petty sound, being into industrial and hardcore at the time, but a corner was turned (some several years back), and this prominent, historical American sound has slowly, yet consistently become a go-to staple. RIP, Mr. Petty, and thank you for your prestigious endeavors.
Shedding the Heartbreakers (for the most part… some members contributed throughout), 1989’s Full Moon Fever marks Tom Petty’s voyage into a very lucrative solo career. His debut album was, not entirely surprisingly, produced by Jeff Lynne (of Electric Light Orchestra), Tom Petty (of Tom Petty… k’mon), and Mike Campbell (of Don Henley and Stevie Nicks fame), and features the still-to-this-day radio hits, Runnin’ Down a Dream, I Won’t Back Down, and Free Fallin’. Classic rock for a modern age (well, as far as the late 1980s were concerned), Full Moon River is essential listening material for any decade.