Readers' Poll: The 10 Best Tom Petty Albums

Your selections include 'Echo,' 'Wildflowers' and 'Damn the Torpedoes'
Previous Next
Tom Petty and The Heartbreakers
MCA Records

blog comments powered by Disqus

8. 'Into the Great Wide Open'

Tom Petty was in a very good place when he began cutting Into the Great Wide Open in late 1990. Full Moon Fever, his recent solo album, was an enormous hit and restored much of his commercial luster after the poorly received Let Me Up (I've Had Enough). Much to the relief of the Heartbreakers, he brought them back into the fold for the highly anticipated Full Moon Fever follow-up disc. The record wasn't quite the commercial monster of Full Moon Fever, but "Learning to Fly" and "Into the Great Wide Open" were huge hits and fans loved the disc.

"The night before we started the record, I turned 40,'' Petty told Rolling Stone in 1991. "And it's tough when you look in the mirror and go, 'Shit, I'm an old guy.' But the night I turned 40 there was a big party for me, so I was surrounded by friends, and I'm glad that I turned 40 at a good time in my life. I didn't go through it a few years ago, when I was feeling like a failure at everything. Like the song says, 'I was so much older then/ I'm younger than that now.' And I listen to the new album and I feel so good, because it's not a cheap shot. It's not a bunch of old assholes trying to take your money.'"

Daily Newsletter

Get the latest RS news in your inbox.

Sign up to receive the Rolling Stone newsletter and special offers from RS and its
marketing partners.


We may use your e-mail address to send you the newsletter and offers that may interest you, on behalf of Rolling Stone and its partners. For more information please read our Privacy Policy.