The Petty Archives

Petty keeps enthusiastic audience on its feet
By Holly J. Wolcott
The Prescott Courier - November 15, 1991

PHOENIX -- The sky in the "Valley of the Sun" may be hazy and polluted, but occasionally there is the feeling that the air is clear and full of life.

Such was the case on November 8. when rocker Tom Petty and his band the Heartbreakers visited the Desert Sky Pavilion in west Phoenix, and gave approximately 11,000 attendees no less than another great show.

Petty, famous since the 1970s for his simple stage scenes and consistent song sets, has gone out on a limp for his "Touring The Great Wide Open" tour by providing concert-goers with extravagant lights, heavy theatrics and surprising political statements.

Drummer Stan Lynch, lead guitarist Mike Campbell, keyboardist Benmont Tench, bassist Howie Epstein and Petty took the stage in full force at about 8:30 p.m. They belted out songs from their newest album while listeners rose to their feet, prepared to stand all night.

Between singing his new stuff such as "Out in the Cold" and "Learning to Fly," Petty entertained the screaming, singing masses by running from a colorful psychedelic dragon that came swooping down on the stage from a side stairway.