Tuesday, March 07, 2017

If Helen Reddy Had Married Tom Petty and Then Divorced Him for Johnny Cash She Would Have Been Helen Reddy Petty Cash!

In all seriousness, I have been on record for many years as saying that the most beautifully occurring sound in nature is a Rickenbacker 12-string well played.

Here's a guy named Mark Agnesi -- playing a bunch of Tom Petty songs -- and completely proving that thesis.

I can't tell you how many of the riffs he's demonstrating here that I'm gonna learn in the next few weeks (now that I've got access to an electric 12-string, albeit a Danelectro and not a Rick.)

However, I should mention that back in the late 80s -- i.e., when I was toiling at the much missed Video Review magazine, with kids who were sorta fifteen years younger than me -- I was totally gobsmacked to find out that there were lots of folks who thought Tom Petty totally sucks.

To this day, I don't get it.

[h/t Matt Mitchell]


Gummo said...


Hey, I was one of those people who dismissed Petty when he started - his earliest stuff was just so Byrds-derivative, it sounded like he didn't have an original idea in his head.

He dispelled that notion pretty quick, though.

steves said...

Go for American Girl!

And didn't Norman's go out of business recently (or switch owners?). I know Mandolin Brothers just shut down as well.

steve simels said...

steves -- That's my plan. First thing I want to learn is that drone intro thing.

Visorman said...

Thanks for this. I may have to break out my DigiTech Mosaic and fake a 12 string.

Anonymous said...

The Danelectro is more versatile that a Ric. Easier to play too. Add compression and the spark of your fingers. Voila.

Always loved Petty. Comparisons to the Byrds are obvious but not fully accurate or fair. From the get-go, Petty had a lot more going on as a songwriter than McGuinn. The debut record is fuckin' remarkable and varied. Underrated songs like "Mystery Man" and "Luna" blew me out. It was all perfectly concise, like records used to be. Less was definitely more. And Tom wrote most of the tunes himself. Petty's far beyond a Byrds clone. If I recall, McGuinn's first non-collaborative songwriting credit was "Mr. Spaceman.":-) Petty is much more the rocker than the more studied and stodgy McGuinn, in spite of the latter's superior playing ability.

Regarding "Luna", I love that song. Once me and this guy went to one of those big stadium afternoon concerts they had in the 70's. It was at the Big A and Skynyrd headlined. Afterwards we made out in his convertible till the stadium traffic cleared. I slipped two hits of blotter acid on my tongue and passed them to my lover in a passionate french. Took a couple myself too. Had pictures of Goofy on them.

We decided to head for Hollywood with the top down. It was a warm summer night with a gorgeous full moon. We hadn't eaten all day so the acid came on quicker than usual. But, before that, I gave him head from the time we hit the freeway till we got to Baldwin Park. By then, the acid was beginning to make itself known.

We parked in the Hollywood Hills to check out the view and do some serious sensual art. We had a mix tape in the deck that I had made him a few weeks before. Our naked flesh in the moonlight, the music and our arousal blended with the acid and we transcended time. I stripped him and got him on the passenger seat. Just as I was going to mount him with my magnificence, "Luna" came forth from the tape. I hovered above him kissing him with pure fucking lust while keeping the fair maiden close enough for him to feel her heat, but just ever so out of reach. We became one with the song and I kept teasing him until at the end of each verse Petty sang "Luna glide down from the moon." That was my cue to envelope and caress him until the next verse started and the teasing resumed. I know it's only about four minutes long, but that song seemed like a blissful eternity.

Later that night we saw the Runaways at the Whisky with the Weirdos, another story.

Speaking of the Whisky, when the Heartbreakers opened for Blondie in 1977, they owned me from "Surrender". Those bastards got my cherry real good. Stan Lynch's backing vox and drumming were superb. And Campbell's jangly telecaster playing made me forget about his teeth. And I hadn't seen a teardrop on stage in eons. Tom was ever so charismatic and fuckable.

VR - "Baby surrender"

Anonymous said...

is that an entry in a 'most tiresome least sexy writing ever' contest?

mainuh said...

Steve, just read that one of my favorite Dylan albums, Desire,featured a Danelectro Bouziki 12 string on Hurricane.


Billy B said...

Have been a Petty (and Mike Campbell) fan since his first album was released in 1976. So I part company with Gummo on this one. Love "You're Gonna Get It". Short, sweet, and to the point..

Anonymous said...

Once again (as in, once too often), Vicky is trying too hard to sound like Edward Bulwer-Lytton penning letters to Penthouse Forum.

Anonymous said...

Anonymous: How very smug of you. Listen, it was just a comment on a blog. And unlike yours, it dealt with the subjects at hand. I dig Petty. He's a better songwriter than Roger McGuinn will ever be. Think about it. When McGuinn sings his "Born To Rock 'N' Roll" you can't exactly say it's convincing. At least I can fuck to Tom Petty. He's got the mojo and his band is one of the best to ever grace the rock 'n' roll landscape.

Go back to grading papers, loser.


Anonymous said...

As is the case whenever you write something, the subject at hand was Vicki.

Anonymous said...

And exactly what was the subject of your comment?

You just don't get it. Sharing a passion for music is what it's about. An excitement which encompasses all aspects of life with a raging intensity... with the fun and fury of the boogaloo.

Opinions and observations are just that. Fleeting, evolving and insignificant. Why fret?

BTW agree with Billy B on "You're Gonna Get It" both as a tune and album. I adore the first four Petty albums and never miss him when he's playing in my area. He gives great concert. Still haven't completely gotten over Stan Lynch leaving (Ferrone is solid but has no personality) but Thurston does very nicely on the backing vox.

Did I ever tell you about the time David Spade rode in the back seat of my car to hear playback of a DAT we had just made of a Petty concert in Indian Wells 2006? We were running it through the car stereo and blasting it as we were leaving the parking lot of the tennis stadium. We did our own instant live. He was on foot and heard it. He climbed in assuring his very handsome bodyguard not to worry. David, wearing a baseball hat and flannel shirt, was startled at the quality.


Anonymous said...

Upending the cliche, it IS funny when she explains it.

Anonymous said...

No, VR, your obsession is with yourself. The last paragraph of your last post is about YOU, as are most of your posts. Do you actually think anybody remembers whether or not you told your David Spade story? It amazes me that you think other people give a shit.

Anonymous said...

The last paragraph was the "eyebrows". It was intentional:-)

Besides those events took place at a Tom Petty concert which we were dedicated enough to tape for future posterity. We shared the results with Mr. Spade at his request. He said the tape sounded better than the concert did from his seat. Also, we ate Mexican food locally with Petty and some of his crew prior to the show. We knew his soundman of many years.

Petty was the subject of the blog post.

It wasn't about your hateful obsession with VR.


Anonymous said...

As opposed to your own adoring obsession with VR.