Tom Leadon, guitarist and founding member of Tom Petty’s first band, Mudcrutch, has died. He was 70. “It’s with nice disappointment, however profound love and gratitude for his life, that the household of Tom Leadon … announce his passing on March 22, 2023, peacefully of pure causes,” his brother, Mark Leadon, posted on Fb.
“Tom Leadon was my deepest guitar soul brother, we spent numerous hours taking part in acoustic guitars and instructing one another issues,” Heartbreakers guitarist and Mudcrutch co-founder Mike Campbell posted on Twitter. “A kinder soul by no means walked the earth. I’ll at all times miss his spirit and generosity. Sleep peacefully, my outdated good friend.”
Leadon was born in Rosemount, Minn., however his household moved to San Diego when he was 4. They moved once more in 1964 to Gainesville, Fla., Petty’s hometown.
It was there that Leadon met Petty in the native band the Epics. “I used to be fascinated with Petty, he at all times fascinated me, I assumed he was very entertaining and really gifted in his personal means,” Leadon later mentioned. “I began hanging round with the Epics and would work the lights for them, and after a pair months they requested me to affix, and Tom informed me later he was pushing for that. He felt he wanted an excellent musician, somebody who may actually play guitar, and I used to be solely 14.”
The Epics ultimately became Mudcrutch with Leadon and Campbell on guitar, Petty on bass, drummer Randall Marsh and singer Jim Lenehan. This lineup launched one regionally distributed single, “Up In Mississippi,” with a B-side of “Trigger Is Understood” in 1971. Leadon left the band a 12 months later in 1972 and headed for California, the place his older brother, Bernie, a former member of the Flying Burrito Brothers, had fashioned Eagles.
Take heed to Mudcrutch’s ‘Up in Mississippi”
Tom Leadon additionally performed for a short while with Linda Ronstadt; in 1975, Eagles included one in all Leadon’s songs, “Hollywood Waltz,” on One among These Nights. “It helped quite a bit and was an actual training within the music enterprise,” Leadon later mentioned. “I realized about publishing and the way individuals can rip off your publishing, and I didn’t get all the cash I used to be purported to get however I did get numerous it. I am grateful to my brother for that.”
In 1976, Leadon joined the band Silver, whose track “Wham Bam” turned a High 20 hit and impressed Petty to maneuver his newest band the Heartbreakers westward. “That did it,” Petty mentioned within the 2005 e-book Conversations With Tom Petty. “‘OK, we’ll California. That is the way in which it’s. We’ll L.A.'”
In 2007, Mudcrutch reunited and recorded two albums, Mudcrutch (2008) and Mudcrutch 2 (2016), each of which made the High 10. “We spent extra time getting sounds this time, and I believe you will hear that,” Leadon mentioned in 2016 of the second LP. “The primary time, no matter we had plugged in, that is just about what you bought. There was a magnificence to that. But this time we took somewhat extra time with ‘What amp are we going to make use of? Which guitar?’ What results may we use, and easy methods to organize the components the correct means.”
Leadon was additionally a guitar instructor in Nashville and carried out together with his band the Bayjacks. In 2017, shortly after Petty’s loss of life, Leadon wrote and launched a tribute to his former bandmate referred to as “My Finest Outdated Pal.” Leadon carried out at 2022’s Tom Petty Weekend, which was held in Gainesville.
“We grew up in San Diego, however there was extra of a music scene in Gainesville, extra of a band scene,” Leadon as soon as mentioned. “It was a wealthy tradition for music. On the time I didn’t understand it as a lot … however Gainesville was a very particular place to be.”
“Tom had a pleasant and outgoing persona and sharp wit,” his brother Mark famous on Fb. “He was an important and really humorous storyteller. Tom liked his household, shut pals and the entire Mudcrutch, Tom Petty and Bayjacks followers. He loved assembly and speaking with all of you. Thanks for serving to to make his final years nice ones. He was significantly liked and will probably be significantly missed.”
Watch Tom Leadon Carry out With Mudcrutch in 2016
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