Elvis Express Radio News
HOW MEETING ELVIS SET TOM PETTY ON THE PATH TO ROCKSTARDOM
October 03,  2017   -   Elvis Express Radio
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Rock star Tom Petty has died after suffering a cardiac arrest at the young age of 66. Petty was rushed to hospital suffering from a full cardiac arrest while in his Malibu home on  
Sunday night after being found unconscious and not breathing.

Born in Gainesville, Florida, on October 20, 1950. Petty is said to have had a hard childhood, doing very badly at school. By a rather lucky stroke at the age of just 10 years old,
Tom's uncle Earl Jenigan, was a film developer at United Artists and was working on Elvis Presley's latest movie. As luck would have it, Elvis was filming 'Follow That Dream' on
location at Ocala, located near the Petty family home.

And so uncle Earl took his Nieces and Nephews (including young Tom) onto the set and introduced them to Elvis Presley, Petty recalls he and his cousins just stood there, open
mouthed, while the King of Rock n’ Roll smiled and nodded to each dumbstruck youngster.
“I don’t know what he said because I was just too dumbfounded,” Petty recalled years
later,
“and then he went into his trailer.” Followed by hundreds of screaming girls, it should be said.

From that day Petty was hooked on music. He told his family he wanted to be a rock n’ roll musician just like Elvis.
"I caught the fever that day and I never got rid of it," says Petty. "I
learned all of those early Elvis songs, and having that kind of background in rock 'n' roll, of where it had come from, has served me to this day. It became an invaluable thing to
have. So for that gift, I thank Elvis for everything I have to this day.
"

The following year he acquired his first guitar and learned the entire Elvis songbook. Aged 17, Petty dropped out of school to play in a band. He would later rise to fame with his
band
'Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers' in the 1970s. The band's self-titled album dropped in 1976, eventually going Gold and with two classic rock anthems, “Breakdown” and
“American Girl”.

The rest as they say, is history.

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