The University of Florida has awarded the late, great Tom Petty an honorary Ph.D. The Associated Press reported, “The school’s board of trustees unanimously voted to award Thomas Earl Petty a posthumous doctoral degree in music during a Friday meeting (December 3rd). Born and raised in Gainesville, Petty once worked as a groundskeeper at UF as he tried to make it in the music industry, but he was never enrolled.” There’s been no word as to whether there will be  special ceremony for the Petty family to be awarded the posthumous honor.

Tom Petty died on October 2nd, 2017, of an accidental overdose at age 66. The Los Angeles County Medical Examiner stated the cause of death to be “multisystem organ failure due to resuscitated cardiopulmonary arrest due to mixed drug toxicity.”


  • In April, the Tom Petty estate released Finding Wildflowers (Alternate Versions). The 16-track collection, culled from the recent deluxe box set of Petty’s 1994 solo Wildflowers album.
  • Recently released was Somewhere You Feel Free: The Making Of Wildflowers, the new Petty documentary focusing on the sessions for Wildflowers album. The doc draws from a newly discovered archive of 16mm film showing Petty at work on the celebrated album.

CHECK IT OUT: Tom Petty & The Heartbreakers video for 1979’s “Here Comes My Girl”: