Tom Petty (20 October, 1950 – 2 October, 2017)
Yet another boy from Florida who met Elvis and fell in love with popular music (like Gram Parsons). Tom went the other way to Gram, straight rock ‘n’ roll with a bit of stoner thrown in, with a light, unpretentious but harmonious and full voice. He wrote, or covered, dark tunes such as You Got Lucky, Refugee and Don’t Come Around Here No More, and great, soaring rock anthems like Free Fallin’ (tailor-made for lads like Tom Cruise in Jerry Maguire to bang on their dashboards while driving America’s highways), American Girl (tailor-made for girls from psycho-films like Silence of the Lambs to bang on their dashboards while driving America’s highways), Runnin’ Down a Dream, Learning To Fly, Something in the Air, Stop Draggin’ My Heart Around (with Stevie Nicks) and, the glorious I Won’t Back Down. He was also sublime in the last Larry Sanders Show, getting into a fist-fight with Greg Kinnear. Vale, Tom. Our hearts break for ya.