The Petty Archives

Tom Petty Burns With A Fever
By Gary Nolan
The Daily Collegian - September 7, 1989

Heartbreaker Frontman stands "Solo But Not Alone" on "Full Moon Fever"
The start of classes at Behrend is marked by many new album releases, including the notable "Full Moon Fever" by veteran rocker Tom Petty. This album marks Petty's first solo venture without the Heartbreakers, Petty's loyal backup band since his first release in 1976. Listeners will learn quickly, however, that the Heartbreakers are very much evident on this album.

Mike Campbell, Petty's longtime friend, cowriters, and lead guitar player for the Heartbreakers, shares billing with Petty on the production, music, and writing of "Full Moon Fever." Other friends accompanying Petty are rock and roll legends such as ex-Beatle George Harrison, Jeff Lynne of the Electric Light Orchestra, and the late Roy Orbison. This release is just off the heels of the enormously successful Traveling Wilburys album, "Volume One," on which Petty joined an all-star band of Harrison, Lynne, Orbison, and Bob Dylan. The Traveling Wilburys album peaked at number one on the Billboard charts.

"Full Moon Fever" is Petty's ninth release and has hit number two on the Billboard charts, making it another in a long long of successful Petty albums for MCA Records. He has since joined the Heartbreakers in a tour of outdoor venues to support the release and is playing sold-out venues all over the country.

The album, in true Petty nature, is a straightforward rock and roll work played with vigor and vitality, leaving the listener anything but bored. "Full Moon Fever" is fueled by the singles "I Won't Back Down" and "Runnin' Down a Dream" which received quite a bit of FM airplay. Other outstanding tracks include "Feel a Whole Lot Better," "Face in the Crowd," and "Free Fallin'." After listening to these thoroughly entertaining and sensitive songs the listener is left wondering if there is anything this rocker cannot do.

Editor's Note: Ouch! I think this is the only negative concert review from the '89 Strange Behavior tour.

Petty fails to deliver at Great Woods
By Geoffrey A. Edgers
The Tufts Daily - September 20, 1989

Considering that on this tour with the Heartbreakers, Tom Petty is playing music more designed for the concert forum than anytime before, it was surprising that his appearance at Great Woods on Sept. 8 can best be described as a massive failure.

Petty's recent albums Full Moon Fever and 1987's Let Me Up (I've Had Enough) both have tight, catchy rock and roll sounds which maintain a looseness that should give the band a chance to improvise onstage. During the show, the looseness was there, but instead of thriving off of it, Petty and the Heartbreakers lulled the audience to sleep with it.

Nolan's Notes
By Jarrett Nolan
The Montclarion - Thursday, September 21, 1989

Tom Petty refused to back down to Jersey state-park officials. Petty has had Greenpeace representatives with him at every stop on his current tour and was infuriated when told that Jersey has a law that "bans private-interest groups on state-park grounds." Park officials planned to keep Greenpeace from entering Petty's recent date at the Arts Center in Holmdel. Petty threatened: "If Greenpeace aren't allowed in, I'm not going on." Soon after, officials broke down...

Music: Stevie Nicks
By Russ DeVault
The Modesto Bee - Friday, October 6, 1989

ATLANTA -- Stevie Nicks may be an unapproachable, larger-than-life figure to her fans, but Tom Petty can tell her to shut up, Bob Dylan doesn't have to, and both her heart and body are vulnerable.

What's more, Nicks is mad at the Australian government, and her current fantasy is having someone -- preferable an executive at Atlantic, her record company -- give her a Lear jet so she doesn't have to worry about excess baggage when she travels.

All of that emerged during a phone interview from Chicago while the 41-year-old singer was enjoying a few days off from her tour to promote "The Other Side of the Mirror," her third solo album since joining the irregularly working Fleetwood Mac in 1975.

A blond, lush-lipped beauty, Nicks is best known for her dreamy, impressionistic songs about witches, gypsies and affairs of her hart. But she can occasionally be remarkably direct and pragmatic.

Discussing her friendship with Petty, who helped her record the hit single "Stop Draggin' My Heart Around" in 1981, she said, "I call Tom when I'm upset or questioning my existence on this planet. He can tell me that I'm just having a bad day, to shut up and go to bed, and I'll take it.

"He doesn't lie, and he doesn't say things to flatter people. He just tells you the truth."

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Gainesville has a rich legacy of rock 'n' roll
By Bill DeYoung
Gainesville Sun - Friday, October 13, 1989

In the mid '60s, the Maundy Quintet and the Epics were at the vanguard of pop in Gainesville, setting standards for many of the talent that would follow. THey were also among the first to break free of the "Beatle clone" look and sound, and to start performing songs that didn't come from the latest Hot Hit list.

There was talent brewing on the bandstands of Hogtown. Restless, uncontainable talent.

Album Review: "Full Moon Fever"
By Ed Brikker
The Clarion Call - October 26, 1989

Tom Petty's first effort without aid of the Heartbreakers, "Full Moon Fever," is a fine effort, indeed. After the disappointing "Let Me Up, I've Had Enough" and the hazey "Southern Accents," "Fever" is a welcome relief. Petty's lyrics are crisp and biting, bringing back memories of "Hard Promises" and "Long After Dark." Collaborating with Petty on seven of the album's twelve tracks is former ELO member and fellow Wilbury, Jeff Lynne. The album also has help from three of the four Heartbreakers, with Mike Campbell (a Heartbreaker) doing the album's guitar solos. Campbell also helped right two of the songs.

Singer Goes on Hiatus
By Marilyn Beck
The Victoria Advocate - November 8, 1989

HOLLYWOOD -- Tom Petty is taking a hiatus from his music career.

"I've been working for two years straight without a break," says the rocker -- who just completed a worldwide tour and whose debut solo "Full Moon Fever" has been one of the best sellers of 1989. "I just want to live life a little bit. You can't write songs if you don't live life sometimes. So I'm not doing anything for the time being -- much to my management's distress."

Worth A Look And Listen
By Chris Willman
The Los Angeles Times - November 19, 1989

Tom Petty's "Runnin' Down a Dream." (Director: Jim Lenahan.) Dreaming Tom returns to a surreal Wonderland, as visited in that great old clip for "Don't Come Around Here No More"--only this time it's animated, in black and white, and he's Alice, not the Mad Hatter. 65/100

Record Reviews: The Most Excellent Albums of 1989
By John J. Miller
The Michigan Review - December 1989

Tom Petty | Full Moon Fever | MCA Records
Tom Petty without the Heartbreakers? Absolutely unthinkable! Or so one would have exclaimed several years ago. But then came the troubled Southern Accents sessions, rumored to have nearly separated the long-time bandmates. Since then, Petty entertained rumors of a desire to record without the Heartbreakers. In 1988, he performed with the Traveling Wilburys, beginning a temporary hiatus in his work with the Heartbreakers, and in the spring of this year he released his long-awaited solo album, Full Moon Fever.

Perhaps due to his work with the Wilburys, Petty discovered a newborn popularity unequaled since 1979's landmark Damn the Torpedoes. A trio of strong, radio-ready hits bolstered this resurgence: "I Won't Back Down," a straightforward rocker about determination in the face of conflict; "Runnin' Down a Dream," a musical tornado fueled by a killer guitar riff; and "Free Fallin'," an acoustic piece about confused, despairing liberation following the end of a relationship.

Fellow Wilbury Jeff Lynne's assistance with production helps Petty's music take a refreshing turn. But Petty does not betray his musical heritage either; three of the four other Heartbreakers make appearances, including guitarist Mike Campbell's production services, instrumental performances, and songwriting contributions. Full Moon Fever is clearly one of the year's best albums, and remarkably enough, it also managed to sell quite a few copies.