Legendary Rocker Tom Petty Dies at 66, Longtime Manager Confirms

Tom Petty
(Photo : Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers / Facebook)

Rocker Tom Petty passed away Monday after being hospitalized due to cardiac arrest, as confirmed by Tony Dimitriades, longtime manager of Tom Petty & The Heartbreakers. Petty was 66.

Dimitriades confirmed the musician’s death on behalf of the Petty family, as reported by CNN.

"He suffered cardiac arrest at his home in Malibu in the early hours of this morning and was taken to UCLA Medical Center but could not be revived. He died peacefully at 8:40pm PT surrounded by family, his bandmates and friends," Dimitriades explained in a statement.

With a drawl to his voice combined with chiming guitars, Petty and his band, the Heartbreakers, were able to produce catchy, sturdy rock music that allowed them to achieve high status in the music industry.

In 2002, Petty and his longtime band was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. Last week, the group concluded their summer tour with three Hollywood Bowl performances.

First rising to fame in the 1970’s, Petty and the Heartbreakers’ debut album contained the song, “Breakdown.” However, it was not until the legendary rocker’s third album, “Damn the Torpedoes,” that he and the group stepped forward to the mainstream. The 1980 album brought in widely positive reviews and went platinum, with major hits such as “Refugee” and “Don’t Do Me Like That.”

Petty also collaborated with Stevie Nicks on the track, “Stop Draggin’ My Heart Around.” This duet brought on a continual period of performances between Petty and several more artists, such as Bob Dylan and the Eurythmics’ Dave Stewart. Moreover, Petty formed The Traveling Wilburys with fellow artists Dylan, Roy Orbison, George Harrison and Jeff Lynne.

In 2015, Petty’s biography was released, revealing his heroin addiction problems, a failed 20-year marriage, and an unsuccessful album.

"Music, as far as I have seen in the world so far, is the only real magic that I know," Petty touched on the subject of music in a 2007 interview with CNN. "There is something really honest and clean and pure and it touches you in your heart."

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