Adam 12

11am - 4pm

Be it Tom Petty‘s solo work, or Tom Petty & the Heartbreakers, it was all under consideration for my latest Vote for the GOAT Top 5 list.


Remember, Top 5 lists for all 14 bands you voted on are here. And my growing list of Top 5 lists are over here. But let’s focus on Mr. Petty. As I’ve done for pretty much all of these lists (with the exception of STP), I didn’t overthink it. I just went with my gut and jotted down the first songs that came to mind. So let’s take a look. First, your Top 5 Tom Petty tunes:


Vote for the GOAT – Tom Petty

5) Mary Jane’s Last Dance

4) Don’t Come Around Here No More

3) Runnin’ Down a Dream

2) American Girl

1) Free Fallin’


Now, my Top 5 Tom Petty tunes:

5) Shady Grove – Am I cheating here? Absolutely not! Tom Petty wrote “Shady Grove” with his band Mudcrutch. This song holds a special place in my heart because whenever I get together to play guitar with my dad and my brother, we play it. We even sing 3-part harmony!


4) Learning To Fly – Love the riff, love the video, love whistling along with the end, especially when I play this one on my show.


3) Breakdown – Maybe my favorite vocal performance in any Petty song. So. Damn. Smooth.


2) Refugee – I was going to put “You Got Lucky” in this slot, then I remembered the riff from “Refugee” and I was like: Nope. This one’s gotta be on the list.


1) A Face In The Crowd – I don’t think there’s an album I listened to more in Junior High than Full Moon Fever. It was a staple on every family vacation we took from 1989 through around 1992. It’s an absolute classic, strong from the first track through the last, and this one’s my favorite. I can’t hear it and not imagine myself gazing out the back window of my dad’s ’82 GMC Jimmy as we drove north on 93 into New Hampshire.