Certain Songs #1007: Tom Petty and The Heartbreakers – “Here Comes My Girl”

Album: Damn The Torpedoes
Year: 1979

Listen to this band.

Listen to how Stan Lynch kicks off the song with a simple drum roll and a utterly sexy, strutting beat on the verses that then walks through the choruses, never once failing to support the rest of the song, even has he does martial drum rolls at the end.

Listen to Ron Blair’s bass, completely in lockstep with Lynch from the moment he comes in to the moment the song ends.

Listen for Benmont Tench in vain during the first verse, until you catch the organ swell just before the chorus, and after that notice how his piano is dancing around the vocals on the chorus, and finally on the third verse how he’s coloring the song with both his piano and the organ, which once it comes to the party, doesn’t leave.

Listen to Mike Campbell, who never once overplayed a song in 40 some-odd years, jingling and jangling around the chorus, adding curlicue hooks at “Watch her walk” and atmosphere throughout.

Listen to Tom Petty, who has grown so confident as a vocalist he doesn’t even bother singing on the verses, his muttering at the beginning of each verse turning into a controlled shout at the end until he hits the chorus with a gorgeous resigned “hey!”

Listen to what on of the greatest rock and roll bands ever sounds like. Right here. The second half of “Here Comes My Girl” aims for thin wild mercury Blonde on Blonde territory and gets there, every single person completely aware of what the rest of them are going. They’re playing inside and outside of each other and the result is glorious.

Listen to this band.

“Here Comes My Girl”

“Here Comes My Girl” performed live in 1980

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