Best Known For
Tom Petty is best known as the front man for the well-known band Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers. He pursued a solo career in 1989, recording hit songs like "Free Fallin'" and "Runnin' Down a Dream."
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3, the band's second album. (Orbison died of a heart attack in 1988.) The group won the Grammy Award for Best Rock Performance by a Duo or Group With Vocals - a career first for Petty.
Reunited with the Heartbreakers, Petty and the band achieved commercial and critical success with Into The Great Wide Open (1991). Petty continued to divide his time between recording with the band and his solo efforts,
producing several more albums. His next solo album, 1994's Wildflowers, was considered one of his strongest recordings by critics. It has a laid-back, melancholy feel to it with the title track and "It's Good to Be King." Petty won the 1995 Grammy Award for Best Male Rock Vocal Performance for "You Don't Know How It Feels."
In 2001, Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers were recognized for their contributions to music with their induction into the Rock and Rock Hall of Fame. The group's latest album The Last DJ came out in 2002, criticizing the music industry. Critics were divided on this album with some calling it gutsy while others thought it sounded grouchy.
Petty's most recent recording was his 2006 solo album Highway Companion, which received mostly positive reviews. The song "Saving Grace" made an appearance on the rock and pop charts. That same year, Petty played several concert dates with the Heartbreakers to celebrate their 30-year anniversary as a group.
Married twice, Petty has two daughters with his first wife Jane. He married his second wife Dana York in 2001.
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