Tom Petty has always been an amazing icon of American Rock n Roll. Always 100 degrees cooler than everyone else around. And always a harder worker than he probably ever got credit for. His recent doc “Runnin’ Down a Dream” was such a revelation. This guy battled against all odds, came on the rock n roll scene and said DAMN THE TORPEDOES, I’M HERE TO STAY. Tom Petty was so fucken punk rock. Nobody knew what to do with him. But he knew. And he persevered. Until we all not only knew, but BELIEVED.
In August of 1989 I made my first pilgrimage to NYC and ended up in the trauma unit at NYC Hospital on 71st street after falling off the roof of a 6 story building on East 94th street and 1st Avenue. While I was laid up there with compression fractures of my 3rd and 4th vertebrae, a periorbital fracture, 2 broken ankles, and all the ribs on my left side broken, one of my nurses brought me a cassette of Full Moon Fever because of it’s hit single “Free Fallin.” She figured it would cheer me up, and rightly so, because she could obviously sense my sense of humor.
Tom Petty was the soundtrack of our lives. And our near demises. Because he was a warrior. It wasn’t easy for him. Like it wasn’t easy for so many of us. He was our champion. He was a true original and had to fight and scratch for all of his early successes. We were all Runnin’ Down A Dream. And as he so eloquently stated, “Baby Even the Losers, Get Lucky Sometimes.” We were ALL lucky to have you in our lives, Tom.
So sorry your luck ran out, my friend. But thank you for being there. Being there for US. You can say We Don’t Know How It Feels. But thank YOU, Tom Petty, for shielding us from how it did feel, and for guiding us through it when we did get hit by it, and when it was unbearable. We Got Lucky, Babe. When We Found You.