In 1970, Before Tom Petty found fame and fortune with the Heartbreakers, he was living like a refugee in Gainsville, Florida, singing and playing bass for tips with guitarist Mike Campbell and keyboardist Benmont Tench in Mudcrutch, the house band at Dub’s Diner.
Their first single, Up In Mississippi, for Pepper in 71, went nowhere, but three years later they signed to Shelter and moved to Los Angeles, thinking they’d hit the big time. Unfortunately, their Depot Street single tanked, and that was it for Mudcrutch. That is, until Petty decided it was time to record Mudcrutch’s debut album.
So the band reconvened last year (with original drummer Randall Marsh and guitarist Tom Leadon) and knocked out 14 old and new country rock humdingers that’ll make you wonder why he waited 32 years.
No, the sound isn’t all that different from what Petty does with the Heartbreakers, but the Mudcrutch album has the looser feel you get from old buddies jamming for kicks.