The Petty Archives

New DVD Releases
By Randy Williams
Santa Monica Daily Press - Friday, September 3, 2010

Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers: Damn the Torpedoes
Part of Eagle Rock Entertainment's acclaimed Classic Album DVD series, this one proved to be the breakthrough album for these rockers from Florida. Members of the band, producers, engineers and critics all unweave the creative process behind this all-American rock'n'roll gem. New interviews with co-producer Jimmy Iovine, engineer Shelly Yakus and Heartbreakers Tom Petty, Ron Blair, Benmont Tench and Mike Campbell provide some illuminating insights about the hooks, melodies, and hardships behind such hits as "Refugee," "Don't Do Me Like That," "Here Comes My Girl" and "Even the Losers." (Eagle Rock Entertainment).

Petty, Heartbreakers get back to blues basics
By Curtis Ross
The Tampa Tribune - September 9, 2010

Mike Campbell got a guitar, and Tom Petty got an idea.

"Tom said, 'Let's make an album around the sound of that guitar,'" Campbell says.

And so "Mojo," the first new Tom Petty & the Heartbreakers album since 2002, was born.

"Mojo" contains the loosest and bluesiest music the band ever has released outside of a few live recordings, with Campbell's guitar right out front.

The guitar in question is a 1959 Gibson Les Paul Standard. It's highly coveted among guitar aficionados for its rich tone and unbeatable sustain.

Tom Petty and the Heartbreaker's Mike Campbell keeps life balanced
By Sean Daly
St. Petersburg Times - Thursday, September 16, 2010

In strictly rock 'n' roll terms, Mike Campbell is a bit of a bigamist. For almost four decades, the guitar god has been married to one woman, Marcie, who has stood by his side no matter the excesses of his particular occupation. "This is a rough business (for marriages)," Campbell says, "so I'm very proud of ours."

Indeed, Marcie must be a saint, because for just as long as she's been hitched, she's had to share her Hall of Fame hubby with another demanding spouse: Tom Petty, who has stood shoulder-to-shoulder with Campbell since the gritty Florida boys were called Mudcrutch, the '70s house band at Dub's in Gainesville.

Guitar hero of Tom Petty show
By Curtis Ross
The Tampa Tribune - September 16, 2010

Fans who think rock 'n' roll primarily is about the guitars would have been in heaven Thursday night when Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers played the St. Pete Times Forum.

Petty may be the front man but Mike Campbell's guitar was front and center in the mix, sometimes even drowning out Petty's vocals.

It's not that surprising considering Petty built the band's latest album, "Mojo," around the sound of Campbell's Gibson Les Paul. Campbell gave that guitar (most likely a replica of the actual 1959 model he reportedly purchased for six figures) several satisfying workouts throughout the set.

He was particularly fiery on "Mojo" tunes such as "Good Enough" and "I Should Have Known It" which nodded to The Beatles' "I Want You (She's So Heavy)" and Led Zeppelin, respectively.

But Campbell was chomping at the bit well before the mid-set "Mojo" material, juicing "I Won't Back Down" and "Mary Jane's Last Dance" with aggressive lead and rhythm work.

The whole band, in fact, sounded not only superb but hugely energized, never mind that it's well into its fourth decade.

Tom Petty concert review: Tampa
By Jim Abbott
Orlando Sentinel - September 17, 2010

At this point, there's not much mystery attached to a Tom Petty concert. When you're a Rock and Roll Hall of Famer, there's a royal obligation to hit all the favorite targets. Petty and the Heartbreakers fulfilled that mandate reliably on Thursday at the St. Pete Times Forum in Tampa: Monster hits such as "I Won't Back Down," "Free Fallin'" and "You Don't Know How it Feels" were front-loaded into a well-paced 105 minutes for a near-capacity crowd. There also were songs from the recently released "Mojo" album to show that the band is still making new material. All the bases covered. The only question, really, is does the band still deliver? After watching the Heartbreakers in this same arena a few years back, I wasn't sure that the old songs had much left to give. I was hoping that perhaps the band would offer some unexpected tweaks to the familiar hits, in the spirit of Petty's Wilbury buddy Bob Dylan. What do I know? Petty didn't monkey with the classics, delivering them with note-for-note precision -- aside from an occasional extended ending to pump the energy to arena level. He also resurrected a few goodies, such as "King's Highway," a still-potent "Breakdown," and even a swing through Chuck Berry's "Carol" in the encore. And the "Mojo" material? New stuff from a band of this vintage can be an excuse to hit the concession stand, but "Mojo" tracks such as "Jefferson Jericho Blues" and "Good Enough" were worth skipping the extra beer run. Guitarist Mike Campbell's twisting riff in "Jericho" dovetailed with Scott Thurston's harmonica to take the band down into the Mississippi Delta. "Good Enough," meanwhile, was a heavier, hypnotic ballad that sttretched into a longer jam. Campbell wasn't the only guitar hero in the building. Billy Gibbons powered a 55-minute opening set by ZZ Top. The video screen showed vintage clips of the flashy cars and women that made the band the toast of MTV's first generation, but the music didn't need much help. The Texas blues ages well. That's also true of Petty and the Heartbreakers, still capable of turning their mojo loose after all these years.

Before The Heartbreakers, Tom Petty had Tulsa ties
By Jennifer Chancellor
Tulsa World - Sunday, September 19, 2010

Who was Tom Petty before he was Tom Petty & the Heartbreakers?

Well, he was Mudcrutch.

But even before Petty became famous, he was a musician in Dwight Twilley's band. For a few gigs, anyway.

Petty's first national television appearance as a bass player was when he played for Tulsa's Twilley on the short-lived children's comedy and variety show "W.A.C.K.O." in the late 1970s. They were invited back four times, Twilley recently said during an interview at his Big Oak Studio in Tulsa.

Both were signed to Shelter Records, co-founded by Tulsa Sound icon Leon Russell in the 1970s.

"A lot of people used to think Petty was from Tulsa. It used to really bother him," said Twilley of the Florida-born multi-instrumentalist.

Review: Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers give the fans what they want in Dallas
By Mac Engel
Fort Worth Star Telegram - Wednesday, September 22, 2010

DALLAS -- Between Tom Petty, Mike Campbell and Billy Gibbons, Tuesday evening's combination of ZZ Top and Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers was the ultimate white man's overbite, air-guitar playing experience.

Playing in front of a full crowd at the Superpages.com Center, Petty and his bandmates demonstrated they are one of the few acts who sound superior in person than from a studio-produced CD. And Campbell, who has been with Petty forever as the Heartbreakers' lead guitarist, routinely stole the show with his energetic and distinct Heartbreaker solos.

Although the band recently released a new album, Mojo, the group mostly stuck with their classic hits to the delight of the thousands in attendance who grasped to the hard-driving guitar sounds as a link to their youth.

Q&A: Tom Petty's right-hand man, Mike Campbell
By Ed Masley
The Arizona Republic - September 22, 2010

Guitarist Mike Campbell has called the tour that brings Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers to US Airways Center in support of a raucous new album called "Mojo" their best tour ever.

And Campbell would know. He did just go through 30 years of live recordings with producer Ryan Ulyate and Petty to determine which songs made the cut for "Live Anthology," a four-disc, 62-track tribute to one of America's greatest rock-and-roll bands.

Here's Campbell on "Mojo," "Live Anthology," touring and more.

Damn the Torpedoes: Classic Albums DVD featuring Tom Petty a treat.
By Peter Simpson
Ottawa Citizen - September 23, 2010

Tom Petty & the Heartbreakers: Damn the Torpedoes | ★★★½
Black Sabbath: Paranoid | ★★★½
Imagine it's 1978 and you're Jimmy Iovine, still a young record producer, fresh off your first big hit with Patti Smith's cover of Bruce Springsteen's song Because the Night. You're considering producing the next album by a young Southern band that has had a couple of minor hits. You walk into their studio and the band leader, Tom Petty, plays two new songs for you, titled Refugee and Here Comes My Girl.