by Tom and other Heartbreakers

"I think that I'm a little more - dare I say - eccentric than those guys. I know those people quite well and I think that they're terrific...I was into that straight rock thing for a long time. However, I don't think that's the whole ball of wax. I think there's more to it than that." Tom Petty commenting on the tendency to catagorize him with artists like Seger, Springsteen, and Mellencamp

"I remember seeing 'A Hard Day's Night' and thinking, 'That's obviously the way to go.' You've got farming over here and on this side - The Beatles." Petty on how he decided he wanted a band

"Because it just sounded sort of dirty and decrepit." former Mudcrutch member Tom Leadon on how the band arrived at their pre-Heartbreakers name

"I think I remembered Blondie talking over a track and it hit me suddenly that I could talk my way into it and take it from there." Petty on 'Here Comes My Girl', the chord procession of which was "hard to sing over"

"I got it from a pilot on television. He said there's not much to learning to fly, the difficult thing is coming down...and I thought, 'Yeah that's true'. The song came pretty quickly after that." Petty on 'Learning to Fly'

"... I love people. I'm fascinated by people, I take endless inspiration from people. I can just stare at people all day long and be entertained by them better than TV. What keeps me going is the fact that I'm able to write songs mainly about people. If they don't have people in them, there's nothing interesting about them."
<(TP 1991)

"They [CD prices] are pretty high. It saddened me when I was talking to a 16 or 17 year old kid the other day and he told me that most people in his group don't buy a lot of albums 'cause they're expensive. It's a drag. It used to be great. I mean, I'm old enough that I remember getting an album for 3 bucks - a mono one. And I could always raise 3 bucks somehow. If I wanted it, I could go out and collect a crate of bottles, then mow a lawn to get a dollar and 75 cents, and by the end of the afternoon I'd have 3 bucks. I'd buy the album and I'd go home and play it. That was one priviledge I had as a kid - access to music. It was affordable." (TP 1991)

I had to rock the boat, I had to shake the tree to see what'd fall down on me - TP 1991

They say be careful who you believe, be careful who you trust - TP 1999

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