2020 Album Draft- Round 4 Pick 4- Run-Sew-Read selects- Tom Petty and The Heartbreakers- Hard Promises.

Run-Sew- Read’s blog can be found at – https://run-sew-read.com/

Some version of Tom Petty was always going to be on my desert island, but I didn’t know until this week that I was picking this album.  It was tough deciding between three early albums: The self-titled Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers, Damn the Torpedoes, and Hard Promises.  I knew I couldn’t have all of the early TP songs I wanted with me, so choices had to be made.  In choosing this album, I left behind American Girl, Need to Know, Listen to Her Heart, and Here Comes My Girl.

These two songs on Hard Promises sealed the deal:  

King’s Road (just fast moving and catchy):

Insider (the other, better duet with Stevie, if you ask me):

Additionally, this album has ‘Thing About You’ and ‘The Waiting’; and the haunting sound of ‘Something Big’.  Nearly every song on this album got radio airplay in my region, so it’s hard to think of only some of the songs as the actual hit singles.  Almost all of them were hits, as far as I was concerned.  

This will be one of the shortest write ups of the draft, because I don’t know what else to say about an album, singer-songwriter and band that were love-at-first-listen for me.  They are as good as it gets for me, and they came along at a time when our radio playlists were infested and strangled with disco.  Their sound had a classic feel from the start.  It went a long way toward making radio music enjoyable again


  1. Just yesterday, I was thinking to myself who the next artist, not mentioned so far, would be to have an album chosen, and tom Petty was in the first three I thought of. But this album is a surprise! “The Waiting” is a fine song but I don’t know much off it – I think I’ve had three full Petty albums + Greatest Hits collections of his, but this wasn’t one of them. But your praise makes me think I should give a listen to some more of the tracks on it. A great singer and writer, and as you suggest, quite a nice change from much of what was on radio when he first came to the attention of the masses.

    • Good predicting! I’m really surprised no Tom Petty albums had been picked until now. There will surely be more. I’m a fan of all of the Heartbreakers’ late 1970s-81 albums, and could have chosen any of them. It came down to 2 days ago, and I had to make a choice somehow.

  2. You can’t go wrong with any of those albums. This one was my first real exposure to Tom Petty as far as albums go. I automatically zeroed in on that Rickenbacker and loved it.
    I’m very happy to see Tom Petty grace us with his appearance. Hearing this song was like an oasis on the radio at the time. Greatl choice.

  3. Tom Petty was very consistent over the decades- I have them all and there is only one album I don’t care for out of all of them- Let Me Up {I’ve Had Enough}- the others are all very good to great. Good choice- it would be hard to select just one.

  4. I really love Tom Petty and the three early albums noted in the post are all great. I probably would have picked “Damn the Torpedoes”.

    Are compilations/greatest hits type albums allowed to be picked? If yes, Tom Petty’s 1993 “Greatest Hits” would be a great choice, IMHO.

  5. I came on board when he released the second record. Your choice just continued a run of really good records. The Heartbreakers are such a good band. Giving it a spin right now. You’re taking a pretty good stack with you.

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