Although Let Me Up (I've Had Enough) found the Heartbreakers regaining their strength as a band and discovering a newfound ease at songcraft, it just didn't sell that well. Perhaps that factor, along with road fatigue, led Tom Petty to record his first solo album, Full Moon Fever. Nevertheless, the distinction between "solo" and "Heartbreakers" is a fuzzy one because Full Moon Fever is essentially in the same style as the Heartbreakers albums; Mike Campbell co-wrote two songs and co-produced the record, and he, along with Benmont Tench and Howie Epstein, all play on the album. However, the album sounds different from any Heartbreakers record due to the presence of former Electric Light Orchestra leader Jeff Lynne. Petty co-wrote the lion's share of the album with Lynne, who also is the record's main producer. In his hands, Petty's roots rock becomes clean and glossy, layered with shimmering vocal harmonies, keyboards, and acoustic guitars. It's a friendly, radio-ready sound, and if it has dated somewhat over the years, the craft is still admirable and appealing. But the real reason Full Moon Fever became Petty's biggest hit is that it boasted a selection of songs that rivaled Damn the Torpedoes. Full Moon Fever didn't have a weak track; even if a few weren't quite as strong as others, the album was filled with highlights: "I Won't Back Down," the wistful "A Face in the Crowd," the rockabilly throwaways "Yer So Bad" and "A Mind with a Heart of Its Own," the Byrds cover "Feel a Whole Lot Better," the charging "Runnin' Down a Dream," and "Free Fallin'," a coming-of-age ballad that could be Petty's best song. Full Moon Fever might have been meant as an off-the-cuff detour, but it turned into a minor masterpiece.
Performance CreditsTom Petty Primary Artist,Acoustic Guitar,Electric Guitar,Keyboards,Tambourine,Vocals,Background Vocals,12-string Guitar,Hand Clapping,Noise
George Harrison Acoustic Guitar,Background Vocals
Jeff Lynne Bass,Guitar,Keyboards,Background Vocals,Hand Clapping,Noise
Roy Orbison Background Vocals
Del Shannon Noise
Mike Campbell Bass,Guitar,Mandolin,Keyboards,Slide Guitar,Soloist
Jim Keltner Drums,Maracas,Marimbas,Tambourine
Benmont Tench Piano
Howie Epstein Background Vocals
Phil Jones Percussion,Drums
Alan Weidel Hand Clapping
Kelsey Campbell Voices,screams
Trembling Blenders Background Vocals
Technical CreditsJeff Lynne Sound Effects,Producer,Contributor
Tom Petty Sound Effects,Producer,Contributor
Del Shannon Sound Effects,Contributor
Mike Campbell Producer,Engineer
Bill Bottrell Engineer
Dennis Kirk Engineer
Don Smith Engineer
Alan Weidel Guitar Techician
Kelsey Campbell Sound Effects
Tony Dimitriades Management
Bob Sebree Back Cover Photo
Awest Art Direction,Illustrations
Tiny Bouchet Art Direction
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
This was my third Cd I bought of his and I think this one is one of his best. I enjoyed all of the songs. I especially enjoyed ''Free Fallin''', ''Zomble Zoo'', and the beautiful ''Alright For Now'' I give it five stars for his exceptional work.
This album is one of the best for Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers. It is a solid cd from track one 'till track 12. If you enjoy the music of the Tom Petty this is a must have album.
Tom Petty's first solo album, Full Moon Fever, still remains his best. The lyrics are great, the music is great. Having three successful singles "I Won't Back Down", "Free Fallin'", and "Runnin' Down a Dream", it also has a multitude of album songs that are worth a listen. I like every song on this album and am always stunned when it is not mentioned in lists of the 100 Greatest Rock Albums, and stuff.