Today's episode is another guest interview and another author and fan. This time I'm chatting with the fiercely brilliant Michael Washburn, who tackled this season's album, Southern Accents, in his 2019 book in the 33 1/3rd series. The book talks about the songs on the album and the story behind how it came together, it talks about Tom's transition from Southern gentleman to Southern Californian, and critically, it also talks about the failure of the album both in artistic and social contexts. This latter subject of the book was the one I was most interested in talking to Michael about, as it most certainly made me reconsider how I'd been thinking about the messages, both conscious and subconscious, that Tom delivered through this album and the subsequent tour, particularly the use of the confederate flag and iconography. But don't worry folks, Michael is a passionate fan of Tom Petty's and his book handles this complicated subject matter honestly but with respect and a perspective. This is not a hatchet job, no matter what certain book review titles may have had you believe!
You can find the book, on Amazon, here: https://amzn.to/3YuoweE but as Michael says in the episode, please consider ordering the book through your local independent bookseller.
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All music, including the theme song, provided by my very best friend Randy Woods. Check him out at https://www.randywoodsband.com/
Logo provided Ed Booth, who you can find here: https://edboothart.com/
The Tom Petty Project is not affiliated with the Tom Petty estate in any way and when you’re looking for Tom’s music, please visit the official YouTube channel first and go to tompetty.com for official merchandise.
A last very special thanks to Paul Zollo. Without his book, Conversations with Tom Petty, this podcast wouldn't be nearly as much fun to research.
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