Thursday, September 6, 2012

Tom Petty says...

In response to the question: 'You've mentioned how she likes to play you your old albums. Has she connected you with your own legacy and made you see your body of work in a new way?

'Yeah, in some ways she has. One thing she was surprised by when we started to hang out was when I said, 'No, I don't listen to Tom Petty. We don't play that.' She said, 'Well, that's kind of a problem for me, because I really like this music, and I do, I play it.' And I said, 'Well, you can play it, you just can't play it around me.' And she didn't understand that, why I wouldn't listen to my own work. And I said, 'It's not that I don't like the work, it's just that I spent a lot of time being really close to it. And when I listen to it, I don't really kick back and listen to it. The whole experience goes through my mind again, and I think of what could have been better, or whatever. I really analyze it when I hear it.' She still talks about when music plays, sometimes it's hard to talk to me. If we're riding in a car, and the radio's on. Any music that I get interested in, I suddenly can't hear anybody talking because I'm listening. And she'll be like, 'Hey! I'm talking to you.' And I'll say, 'I'm sorry, I was listening to the bass on this...' But she will, from time to time, say, 'Listen, you're gonna listen to this. We're gonna put this on.' And it's a good experience from time to time, because listening to an album you've made when you've been away from it for years and you don't even know what's coming next, you do hear it like the listener heard it. And I must say I'm pleasantly surprised by it. I hear it and go, 'God, that wasn't a waste of time. We really did do something that is pretty good.' So she does that for me. She does bring me down to earth a lot. She's very good about bringing me down to earth and saying, 'Listen - things are good. You've got a lot going good here.'

-Tom Petty (Conversations with Tom Petty, Paul Zollo, 2006)

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