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Heartbreakers Frontman Tom Petty Dies at 66, Family Says

Rocker Tom Petty died Monday after being rushed to a Los Angeles hospital, in line with Tony Dimitriades, longtime supervisor of Tom Petty & The Heartbreakers. Dimitriades confirmed Petty’s demise on behalf of the performer’s household.

Tom Petty performs throughout the 2017 MusiCares Person of the Year, honoring Tom Petty, in Los Angeles, California on February 10, 2017. (Credit: ROBYN BECK/AFP/Getty Images)

He was 66.

“He suffered cardiac arrest at his home in Malibu in the early hours of this morning and was taken to UCLA Medical Center but could not be revived. He died peacefully at 8:40pm PT surrounded by family, his bandmates and friends,” Dimitriades mentioned in a press release.

With his nasally voice and chiming guitar, Petty and his longtime band, the Heartbreakers, churned out an immediately recognizable model of sturdy, heartland rock that made them a classic-radio staple for many years. Petty, together with the band, was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2002.

The group completed a summer time tour with three performances at the Hollywood Bowl final week.

Petty and the Heartbreakers first got here to fame within the 1970s. It was each with that group and as a solo artist that Petty had a string of hits throughout the many years, together with “Free Fallin’,” “American Girl” and “I Won’t Back Down.”

Their 1976 debut contained a minor hit, “Breakdown,” nevertheless it wasn’t till Petty’s third album, “Damn the Torpedoes,” that he and the band broke via to the mainstream.

That 1980 album gained crucial raves, went platinum and spawned the hits “Don’t Do Me Like That” and “Refugee.”

Petty sang with Stevie Nicks that very same 12 months on her smash hit, “Stop Draggin’ My Heart Around.” The duet kicked off an extended and fruitful interval of collaboration between Petty and different artists.

He recorded “Don’t Come Around Here No More” — memorable for its trippy, Mad Hatter-themed music video — with the Eurythmics’ Dave Stewart in 1985. Petty joined Bob Dylan on tour the following 12 months, which additionally included dates with the Grateful Dead.

He joined fellow music legends Dylan, George Harrison, Jeff Lynne, and Roy Orbison in 1988 to kind The Traveling Wilburys. They launched two studio albums.

Related: ‘Heartbroken’: The music world, followers react to Tom Petty’s demise

It was a wealthy profession for Petty, who was born in Gainesville, Florida and have become hooked on rock and roll when — at the age of 11 — he met celebrity Elvis Presley on a film set.

Petty joined his first band, The Sundowners, in highschool at the age of 14.

After moving into an argument with the band’s drummer, Petty give up and moved on to hitch a bunch referred to as The Epics, which included Tom Leadon, a brother of Eagles guitarist Bernie Leadon.

“We realized Tom was the real musician of the band,” their fellow band member Rick Rucker advised the Orlando Sentinel in 2006.

The Epics later modified their title to Mudcrutch, and Petty traveled to Los Angeles searching for a report deal for the rock quintet.

Despite touchdown a deal, the group quickly disbanded.

A brand new group that included Petty and two former Mudcrutch members fashioned in 1975, ultimately turning into often known as Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers.

After pioneering the heartland rock sound, Petty went solo in 1989 earlier than regrouping with the Heartbreakers three years later.

He additionally discovered fame as an actor. His aptitude for drama was on show in his music movies for songs like “Mary Jane’s Last Dance.”

Petty starred with Kevin Costner within the 1997 movie, “The Postman.” He additionally had a recurring position because the voice of Elroy “Lucky” Kleinschmidt within the animated comedy sequence, “King of the Hill.”

A 2015 biography on Petty documented a darkish flip for the singer and his wrestle with heroin habit in 1997, following the collapse of his 20-year marriage and a failed album.

“Tried to go cold turkey, and that wouldn’t work,” Petty mentioned within the e book. “It’s an ugly f***ing thing.”

Petty advised CNN in a 2007 interview that he liked music as a lot because it liked him.

“Music, as far as I have seen in the world so far, is the only real magic that I know,” he mentioned. “There is something really honest and clean and pure and it touches you in your heart.”


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