Petty always had a purpose, and a man like that, a man with a purpose, should have had more time – weeks, months, years – to practice what he called fishing and others call songwriting.
“It’s kind of a lonely work,” he said, “because you just have to keep your pole in the water. I always had a little routine of going into whatever room I was using at the time to write in, and just staying in there till I felt like I got a bite.
“I compare it to fishing: There’s either a fish in the boat or there’s not,” he said with a laugh. “Sometimes you come home and you didn’t catch anything, and sometimes you caught a huge fish. But that was the work part of it to me. … I just remember being excited when I had a song done, and I knew I had a song in my pocket, I always felt really excited about it.”
Tom Petty died on October 2, 2017 in California aged 66.
Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers live at the Stephen C O’Connell Center Gainesville, Florida; November 4, 1993.
Into The Great Wide Open, I Wont Back Down, Free Fallin, Running Down A Dream, Learning To Fly and American Girl embedded below.