Happy 66th Birthday to Tom F#$KING Petty!!!

37 Years ago this week, I was a 13 year old kid in Huntington, NY.  I was at that age where I knew I hated my parents music and was just discovering rock 'n roll from the older kids on the block.

 I had recently bought my first electric guitar from Jeff Crowley... the cool 17 year old on the street who just got a cool new Carvin guitar and amp out of the catalog.  The guitar I bought from Jeff was a Hondo II Les Paul copy and I bought it for $35.  It was worth every penny and I thought it was the SHIT because I had just seen The Who's "The Kids Are Alright" and it looked like one of Pete Townshend's guitars.

Jeff said to come by this weekend around noon and I'll teach you some chords.  I had an old acoustic my Mom had given me for Christmas and I think I knew how to play a G, which Harry Chapin actually showed me at Coindre Hall.  Anyway, I show up to Jeff's on that Saturday and he's all excited about this new album he just bought that morning.  You gotta HEAR THIS, he says.  We'll learn this song today.  So he lays the needle down on the album on the turntable and I hear for the first time, Refugee and the incredible rest of Damn The Torpedoes.  We spent the afternoon, moving that needle to the beginning of the record to hear the first chord progression I ever learned, listening to it over and over and over.  And learning my first bar chord, F#m.

I've been a fan ever since.

So happy 66th birthday, Tom Petty!

Thanks for the tunes.

More in this category: « Remembering Howie Epstein

Log in or Sign up