Tom Petty & the Heartbreakers: Greatest Hits
- Audio CD (January 12, 2010)
- Original Release Date: November 16, 1993
- Number of Discs: 1
- Format: CD
- Label: MCA
reissue of Tom Petty & The Heartbreakers Greatest Hits,originally released in 1993, has gone on to be the best selling collection inthe band's four decades and counting career. Over seven times platinum, thiscollection now has been remastered, upd He's sold millions ofalbums, filled arenas, and hobnobbed with George Harrison, Bob Dylan and RoyOrbison, but Tom Petty's driving heartland rock has often been taken forgranted by the same critics who hail John Mellencamp as a genius. GreatestHits is an airtight argument for Petty's own greatness. Starting with"American Girl," the rollicking, Byrds-inspired single from Petty's firstalbum in 1976, this compilation presents a chronological overview of theguitarist-vocalist's career with and without the Heartbreakers, alsochronically underrated as one of today's best bands. Every one of the 16 oldertracks is a well-crafted gem, full of solid guitar hooks ("Here Comes MyGirl"), arresting images ("Don't Come Around Here No More") and simple butpoetic lyrics ("The Waiting"). Petty isn't an innovator; he's a talentedcraftsman with impeccable taste and a strong sense of rock history,internalizing influences ranging from the Beatles' psychedelic masterpiece,Revolver, to the best of '70s punk. (It's interesting to remember that earlyefforts such as "Refugee" and "Don't Do Me Like That" first won Pettyattention as a New Wave artist). With his Dylanesque vocals and chiming12-string guitars, Petty is more often linked these days with the sounds ofthe '60s. But recent tunes such as "Learning to Fly" and "Into the Great WideOpen" are as smart, relevant and (dare I say) alternative as anything in MTV'sBuzz Bin. --Jim DeRogatis
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