This past week I watched one of the best music documentaries I've seen - Runnin' Down A Dream.
The reason this doco stood out for me was because Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers' story is the absolute musicians' "dream". Small-town friends record demos, drive across country to LA, get signed, one failed album, then success came and steadily built into a legacy act that's survived (more or less) almost 40 years together.
I also loved this film because I could relate to Tom Petty as a songwriter - he's a story-teller, he's straight to the point, he's not afraid of hooks or to be himself. In fact, if you watch the film you'll observe that he stands by his 'self' and vision fiercely - a trait that also translates into his dealings with the music industry in general in that he doesn't stand for the exploitation that pervades its core.
It's almost four hours long but has everything a good doco should have to keep you interested - great stories, contemporary opinions, tour footage, drama, loss and insight.
Since finishing it I've been on an almost non-stop Tom Petty binge and his third album with the Heartbreakers is a ridiculously good highlight. It has Refugee, Don't Do Me Like That, Here Comes My Girl and Even the Losers amongst other great tracks that showcase what Tom Petty is all about as a songwriter.
Next time the sun shines, pop it on and soak up a true classic.
Here's the trailer for the Runnin' Down a Dream doco too: