On October 7th, 2017 Tom Petty joined the rock n roll orchestra on the other side. He was 67 years young. For rockers around the world, like Prince a few months earlier, it was a shock coupled with immense sadness. Forever on we will not have Tom around with his Heartbreakers disposing easy wisdom in song or slyly telling off adversaries with Southern charm or that kick ass band that hummed like a stock car racer. It was a hard one to take.
Join the Rock N Roll Librarian Shelley Sorenson and the Rock N Roll Archaeologist Christian Swain as they discuss Warren Zanes’ 2015 biography of the Gainesville born singer songwriter born in 1950 who found rock n roll as the only answer to his passions.
No one other than Warren Zanes, rocker and writer and friend, could author a book about Tom Petty that is as honest and evocative of Petty's music and the remarkable rock and roll history he and his band helped to write.
Born in Gainesville, Florida, with more than a little hillbilly in his blood, Tom Petty was a Southern shit kicker, a kid without a whole lot of promise. Rock and roll made it otherwise. From meeting Elvis, to seeing the Beatles on Ed Sullivan, to producing Del Shannon, backing Bob Dylan, putting together a band with George Harrison, Dylan, Roy Orbison, and Jeff Lynne, making records with Johnny Cash, and sending well more than a dozen of his own celebrated recordings high onto the charts, Tom Petty's story has all the drama of a rock and roll epic. Petty, known for his reclusive style, has shared with Warren Zanes his insights and arguments, his regrets and lasting ambitions, and the details of his life on and off the stage.
This is a book for those who know and love the songs, from "American Girl" and "Refugee" to "Free Fallin'" and "Mary Jane's Last Dance," and for those who want to see the classic rock and roll era embodied in one man's remarkable story. Dark and mysterious, Petty manages to come back, again and again, showing us what the music can do and where it can take us.Petty: The Biography
Disclaimer: The views expressed here by Shelley Sorenson are made in her capacity as a private citizen, and do not necessarily reflect the views of the San Francisco Public Library or the City of San Francisco.