Song of the Day #3,400: ‘Crawling Back To You’ – Tom Petty

[Continuing my countdown of favorite Tom Petty albums, in honor of the late, great musician.]

My top three Tom Petty albums are all so good in so many different ways that I can make a case for any one of them as #1.

These are also the three albums that show up in the top spots of just about every Tom Petty ranking I could find online. That’s because Petty has generally been more of a singles artist than an album artist, but also because these three albums are just that good.

#3 – Wildflowers (1994)

Petty’s second “solo” album featured every Heartbreaker but drummer Stan Lynch, but Petty and producer Rick Rubin wanted the freedom to explore new territory without the baggage of the band. I always wonder how band members feel about decisions like that.

At any rate, it worked. Wildflowers is a beautiful, rootsy work, notable for both some hard rockers (‘You Wreck Me,’ ‘Honey Bee,’ ‘Cabin Down Below’) and some of the gentlest songs Petty ever recorded (‘Wildflowers,’ ‘To Find a Friend,’ ‘Only a Broken Heart,’ today’s SOTD).

This album is great in its own right, but also for the way it broadened and deepened the scope of Petty’s career, adding folk and Americana flavors to his stew of Southern rock and California pop.

Waiting by the side of the road
For day to break so we could go
Down into Los Angeles
With dirty hands and worn out knees

Ooh, I keep crawlin’ back to you
Ooh, I keep crawlin’ back to you

The ranger came with burning eyes
The chambermaid awoke surprised
Thought she’d seen the last of him
She shook her head, let him in

(Chorus)

Hey baby, there’s somethin’ in your eyes
Tryin’ to say to me
That I’m gonna be alright if I believe in you
It’s all I want to do

It was me and my sidekick
He was drunk and I was sick
We were caught up in a barroom fight
‘Til an Indian shot out the lights

I’m so tired of being tired
Sure as night will follow day
Most things I worry about
Never happen anyway

(Chorus x2)

I keep crawlin’ back to you

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2 thoughts on “Song of the Day #3,400: ‘Crawling Back To You’ – Tom Petty

  1. Dana Gallup says:

    I think, overall. Wildflowers is my favorite Petty album. There isn’t a weak track on it. This is Petty maturing and taking his songwriting to the next level. Some of his later work tilted a bit too much to the commercial and then he arguably overcorrected, but this album had the balance just right.

  2. Amy says:

    This is a close second for me. The songs on this album are just about perfect.

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