Story by Bozz

The music world lost another legend on Monday. Thomas Earl Petty was 66 years old. Hailing from Gainesville, Florida, Tom set out to become a musician when formed a band called the Epics, which later evolved into Mudcrutch and then evolved into the Heartbreakers.

At a time when disco and punk rock ruled the airwaves, Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers were in the forefront of the rock music scene of the late 70s. MTV put Tom and company into the mainstream in the early to mid-80s with their classic videos such as “Woman In Love” and “Stop Draggin’ My Heart Around” (with Stevie Nicks) and their more memorable videos for “You Got Lucky” and “Don’t Come Around Here No More”.

After years of one successful album after another, Tom did the somewhat solo thing in 1989 with "Full Moon Fever". Although he was credited as being solo, some of his band personnel consisted of longtime Heartbreakers bandmates. And of course, there was his inclusion in arguably one of the greatest supergroup of guitarists ever assembled: the Traveling Wilburys (with George Harrison, Roy Orbison, Bob Dylan and Jeff Lynne). Tom will now be jamming with George and Roy in the great gig in the sky.

It was Tom Petty’s live performances that drew sellout crowds, many of which were right here in the Garden State. Yours truly did a little research into Tom’s Jersey Shore concert appearances over the years. According to setlist.fm, Tom Petty, with and without the Heartbreakers, played a total of twelve concerts in the Jersey Shore area. Perhaps you might have been in the audience at some of these shows.

  • July 15, 1978 - Paramount Theater, Asbury Park
  • July 11, 1987 - Garden State Arts Center, Holmdel
  • August 20, 1989 - Garden State Arts Center, Holmdel
  • August 20, 1995 - Garden State Arts Center, Holmdel
  • June 30, 1999 - PNC Bank Arts Center, Holmdel
  • July 1, 2001 - PNC Bank Arts Center, Holmdel
  • July 6, 2002 - PNC Bank Arts Center, Holmdel
  • August 9, 2003 - PNC Bank Arts Center, Holmdel
  • August 10, 2003 - PNC Bank Arts Center, Holmdel
  • June 22, 2005 - PNC Bank Arts Center, Holmdel
  • July 24, 2005 - Borgata, Atlantic City
  • September 11, 2014 - PNC Bank Arts Center, Holmdel

Tom Petty was a rock and roll icon. His music is timeless, as he is one of 105.7 The Hawk’s core artists. It is very rare on a Saturday when I don’t play at least one Tom Petty song during my shift (10am-3pm). I’ll be sure to pay tribute to a rock and roll legend this Saturday. RIP Tom Petty.

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