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Tom Petty Has Passed Away at 66

Tom Petty, the iconic songwriter who embodied classic, vibrant American rock for decades has died at the age of 66. Petty’s longtime manager, Tony Dimitriades confirmed the musician’s passing after erroneous reports earlier today. He suffered from cardiac arrest in his Malibu home and could not be revived.

Born Thomas Earl Petty in Gainesville, Florida, the musician would go onto leave an indelible mark on popular music with his early band Mudcrutch and then most notably with Tom Petty and The Heartbreakers. The latter released an endless string of hits beginning with the 1977 reissue of their first single “Breakdown.” That song came from the group’s first, self-titled record, which also features the classic, “American Girl.” By 1979’s Damn The Torpedoes, Tom Petty And The Heartbreakers were megastars and dominated the airwaves well into ’80s.

Later in his career, Petty pursued solo work and also contributed to the supergroup, The Traveling Wilburys, with George Harrison, Roy Orbison, Bob Dylan, and Jeff Lynne. Most recently however, Tom Petty And The Heartbreakers were celebrating the band’s 40th year with a national tour. Their most recent date was a September 25th performance at the Hollywood Bowl, and they had planned to end their tour with two dates in New York City this November.

Though one of Petty’s final messages on social media was one of thanks to all his fans for their decades of support, its clear that the debt of gratitude lies with us. Thank you for everything, Tom Petty, and rest easy.

Featured Image: Shelter Records

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