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C.A.T: Full Moon Fever

Tom Petty – Full Moon Fever (1989)
Veteran rocker Tom Petty has created quite an impressive catalog of classic rock radio staples over the years. Often accompanied by a solid backing band in The Heartbreakers, Tom and the gang have put together some great rock albums but who would have thought that Tom Petty’s first solo album Full Moon Fever, released in the spring of 1989 would end up being the album that basically defined Petty as a rock legend?

Containing a handful of songs co-written with producer Jeff Lynne, Tom decided to do a solo album after deciding that his latest batch of songs were too different from the normal Heartbreakers fare. Recorded primarily by Tom Petty, Jeff Lynne, Heartbreakers multi-instrumentalist Mike Campbell and drummer Phil Jones (not to mention some guest musicians including the likes of George Harrison, Roy Orbison, and Del Shannon) Full Moon Fever is hit after hit of pop rock perfection.

“Free Fallin'”, “I Won’t Back Down”, “Runnin’ Down a Dream”, “A Face in the Crowd”, “Yer So Bad”… It’s like listening to a greatest hits album. Jeff Lynne gives the album that tight, polished sound with rich vocals that often accompanies his work as a producer. As a matter of fact, it was agreed by the members of The Traveling Wilburys that this felt and sounded so much like a Wilbury’s album that The Traveling Wilburys called their second album, released in 1990 Traveling Wilburys Vol. 3.

A very positive and enjoyable listening experience this is probably my favorite Tom Petty related work I’ve heard. From the lush acoustic opening of “Free Fallin” to its energetic finale in “Zombie Zoo.” This album never fails to deliver the goods.

Favorite Tracks: “Free Fallin”, “I Won’t Back Down”, “Zombie Zoo”


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