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Tom Petty, One Year After Death, Has New Music Projects On the Way

Tom Petty

Tom Petty performing in 2016. He died last year, but his music lives on. (Photo: David W. Baker)

Tom Petty died suddenly one year ago from an accidental drug overdose, robbing rock music of one of its most enduring artists. For me, it seemed as if Petty would always be around delivering his rock solid music.

Petty consistently delivered just terrific work. When he was announced as a member of The Traveling Wilburys (with Roy Orbison, George Harrison, Bob Dylan and Jeff Lynne) he joined the ranks of the greats.

My favorite Petty track was “Room At The Top” from his terrific album Echo (1999). I’ll never forget when he played with Dylan in 1986. The tour was called the “True Confessions Tour,” and it was just sensational; I saw four separate concerts and they were all stunning.

What a lot of people didn’t realize was that he had two terrific radio shows on SiriusXM called “Tom Petty Music” and “Tom Talks To Famous People.”

I particularly became enamored of the latter show when Monkee Micky Dolenz was his guest. Tom would play music from his current guest and talk about it.

I remember interviewing Dolenz right after that show (which was done at Petty’s Malibu home) and he was just knocked out that Petty had so many insights into the music.

Dolenz said he was on the money with most all of them. I also spoke to Petty’s radio man Mark Felsot, who said that the Dolenz show was just great.

Every time I hear Petty’s music now, I’m just struck by how great it is.

Warner Brothers, his last label, announced this week that a triple-CD set will be out on Nov. 16, called The Best of Everything.

The set is being hailed as his “first career-spanning hits compilation.” It includes songs from his recordings with the Heartbreakers, first band Mudcrutch and his solo career.

The lead single, is an alternate version of the title track, a ballad from 1985’s Southern Accents that contains an additional verse. The other previously unavailable tune is “For Real,” which a press release release describes as “poignant and autobiographical.”

In addition to the 38-song CD and digital edition, The Best of Everything will also be available as a four-LP set, both in black and limited-edition colored vinyl, on Dec.7.

The set features an essay by Cameron Crowe, a former Rolling Stone writer who was featured in the movie, “Almost Famous.”

News of The Best of Everything’s arrival comes only a week after the release of An American Treasure, a 60-song box set that shines a spotlight on Petty’s live recordings, deeper cuts and unreleased songs.

Last month, Heartbreakers guitarist Mike Campbell–now a member of Fleetwood Mac–suggested that more archival projects could be on the way, including a retrospective of their 1997, 20-date run at the Fillmore and the oft-discussed double-album version of 1994’s Wildflowers.

Tom Petty lives on!

Short Takes

Micky DolenzThe Monkees will celebrate the season with their first holiday album, featuring new vocals by Micky Dolenz, Michael Nesmith, and Peter Tork. The late Davy Jones’ unmistakable voice – taken from vintage recordings – also appears on two songs. Christmas Party will be available on CD digital download, and streaming services on October 12. On Christmas Party, The Monkees put their unmistakable vocal stamp on a wide array of classic Christmas tracks, from the R&B holiday standard “Merry Christmas, Baby,” to Paul McCartney’s “Wonderful Christmastime” and Wizzard’s yuletide classic “I Wish It Could Be Christmas Every Day.” After helming The Monkees’ critically acclaimed studio album Good Times! in 2016, Grammy and Emmy-winning songwriter Adam Schlesinger reprises his role as producer on Christmas Party.

Donnie Kehr’s Rockers On Broadway celebrates its 25th Anniversary this November and will honor Fringe-actor and Broadway-stalwart Michael Cerveris. Fun Fact: Both Cerveris and Kehr appeared in The Who’s Tommy on Broadway.

Tom Petty Track List, The Best of Everything
Disc 1

1. “Free Fallin’”
2. “Mary Jane’s Last Dance”
3. “You Wreck Me”
4. “I Won’t Back Down”
5. “Saving Grace”
6. “You Don’t Know How It Feels”
7. “Don’t Do Me Like That”
8. “Listen to Her Heart”
9. “Breakdown”
10. “Walls (Circus)”
11. “The Waiting”
12. “Don’t Come Around Here No More”
13. “Southern Accents”
14. “Angel Dream (No. 2)”
15. “Dreamville”
16. “I Should Have Known It”
17. “Refugee”
18. “American Girl”
19. “The Best of Everything” (Alt. Version)

Disc 2

1. “Wildflowers”
2. “Learning to Fly”
3. “Here Comes My Girl”
4. “The Last DJ”
5. “I Need to Know”
6. “Scare Easy”
7. “You Got Lucky”
8. “Runnin’ Down a Dream”
9. “American Dream Plan B”
10. “Stop Draggin’ My Heart Around” (feat. Stevie Nicks)
11. “Trailer”
12. “Into the Great Wide Open”
13. “Room at the Top”
14. “Square One”
15. “Jammin’ Me”
16. “Even the Losers”
17. “Hungry No More”
18. “I Forgive It All”
19. “For Real”

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