Join our newsletter to stay current on all your favorite artists!

This 1977 Interview Proves That Tom Petty Was Coolness Personified [Watch]

On Monday, October 2nd, the music world said goodbye to Tom Petty, a singular talent who transcended generational lines and made his way into the pantheon of rock and roll history.

Rock Icon Tom Petty Dead At Age 66

Petty will be remembered as a singular musical talent through his celebrated work as a singer, songwriter, producer, and bandleader. But while his concrete work will define his legacy as the year’s roll on, Petty’s soothing presence and effortlessly cool demeanor has always been at the center of his beloved persona.

Warren Haynes Pens Emotional Note About Tom Petty

An affable, mild-mannered, soft-spoken man, Petty seemed to exude an air of calmness and grace that simply cannot be taught. He always seemed like a straight shooter, a sincere and good-natured soul. That ethos permeated his career, from his earliest days in the spotlight to his final moments onstage, when he celebrated the 40th anniversary of his now-legendary band with a sold-out run at the Hollywood Bowl.

Watch Emotional Footage From Tom Petty’s Final Live Show At Hollywood Bowl, 7 Days Before His Death

As we sift through years of Petty memories this week in the wake of his passing, the 1977 interview he gave to Bob Harris for British music TV program me The Old Grey Whistle Test stands out as a memorable example of the artist’s singularly laid-back demeanor. As Petty expounds during the interview, “Rock n Roll is pretty Universal.” And the way he says it–the way he illustrated it for decades–we even feel comfortable taking that statement one step further: Tom Petty is Universal.
So let’s get to the point: Roll another joint, turn the radio loud, and watch a young Tom Petty shoot the breeze from the “rock and roll center of the Universe, Sunset Strip” (via BBC Archive):

You can also watch Petty and the Heartbreakers perform “Fooled Again” for the 1977 OGWT appearance below, courtesy of YouTube user tallowmanoldies: