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Concert Connection: Tom Petty Summer’s Headliner
By Ronda Templeton
St. Petersburg Independent — Saturday, June 28, 1980
The summer months may have started slowly for concertgoers in the St. Petersburg area, but music fans may want to save their money to attend several shows during July.
Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers, who many might consider the biggest concert draw of the summer, finally comfirmed plans to perform in the Bayfront Center July 15. The concert is scheduled in honor of radio station 98 Rock’s annual birthday celebration.
Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers catapulted to the top of the music industry this year with the release of the band’s third album, Damn the Torpedoes. The group’s first two albums had received critical praise, but the new album made the band a top concert act and led to international airwave attention.
Damn the Torpedoes has sold more than 2-million copies in the United States, and the album is a product of talented musicianship and Petty’s strongest lyrical and musical arrangement to date.
Petty and the members of his band — Stan Lynch, drums; Benmont Tench, keyboards; Ron Blair, bass; and Mike Campbell, guitar — are originally from Gainesvile. The group’s music has not changed radically since its first album, but the waning popularity of disco has led to a rebirth of interest in Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers’ brand of rock ‘n’ roll.
Several successful singles have been released from the Damn the Torpedoes album, including Don’t Do Me LIke That and Refugee.
Tickets for the 8 p.m. July 15 concert are $7.98 general admission and are available at Peaches and Stereorama in Clearwater, Asylum Records in St. Petersburg, Disc Records in Tyrone Square Mall and the Bayfront Center box office.