Wildflowers (Tom Petty album)

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Tom Petty Wildflowers.jpg
Studio album by Tom Petty
Released November 1, 1994 (1994-11-01)
Recorded 1992–94
Studio Los Angeles, California at Sound City and Ocean Way Recording
Length 62:48
Label Warner Bros.
Tom Petty chronology
Greatest Hits
Songs and Music from "She's the One"
Professional ratings
Review scores
Source Rating
AllMusic 4.5/5 stars[1]
Robert Christgau B–[2]
Entertainment Weekly B–[3]
The Essential Rock Discography 7/10[4]
MusicHound 2.5/5[5]
NME 8/10[6]
Rolling Stone 4/5 stars[6][7]
Virgin Encyclopedia of Popular Music 4/5 stars[8]

Wildflowers is the second solo studio album by American musician Tom Petty, released on November 1, 1994. The album was the first released by Petty after signing a contract with Warner Bros. Records (where he had recorded as part of the Traveling Wilburys) and the first of three albums produced by Rick Rubin. The album was certified 3x platinum in the United States by the Recording Industry Association of America.

Three singles were released from the album between 1994 and 1995, the most successful of which, "You Don't Know How It Feels", reached #13 on the Billboard Hot 100 and topped the Album Rock Tracks chart for one week.

The album features all members Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers, with the exception of drummer Stan Lynch. Steve Ferrone plays drums on Wildflowers and would join the band officially the following year. However, the album was not credited to the Heartbreakers because, in Petty's words, "Rick (Rubin) and I both wanted more freedom than to be strapped into five guys."[9] Freedom notwithstanding, Petty chose to use most of his regular band as session players, demonstrating his comfort with that format. Rolling Stone placed Wildflowers at number 12 on their list of the best albums of the 1990s.[10] Guitar World placed the album at number 49 in their "Superunknown: 50 Iconic Albums That Defined 1994" list.[11]

Some outtakes from this album were included on Songs and Music from "She's the One".

In April 2015, when Petty's back catalog was released in High-resolution audio, this was the only one of two albums that was not included in the series (Songs and Music from "She's the One" was the other one), but a hi-res version is available on Pono Music.

On June 2, 2015, Petty released the track "Somewhere Under Heaven", the first song from an upcoming album Wildflowers – All The Rest, but Petty has not yet specified a release date.

Track listing[edit]

All songs written by Tom Petty, except where noted.

  1. "Wildflowers" – 3:11
  2. "You Don't Know How It Feels" – 4:49
  3. "Time to Move On" – 3:15
  4. "You Wreck Me" (Petty, Mike Campbell) – 3:22
  5. "It's Good to Be King" – 5:10
  6. "Only a Broken Heart" – 4:30
  7. "Honey Bee" – 4:58
  8. "Don't Fade on Me" (Petty, Campbell) – 3:32
  9. "Hard on Me" – 3:48
  10. "Cabin Down Below" – 2:51
  11. "To Find a Friend" – 3:23
  12. "A Higher Place" – 3:56
  13. "House in the Woods" – 5:32
  14. "Crawling Back to You" – 5:05
  15. "Wake Up Time" – 5:19

"Girl on LSD" was also recorded during the album sessions, but relegated to the B-side to the "You Don't Know How It Feels" single. Several songs on the She's the One soundtrack album were initially recorded for this album. "Leave Virginia Alone" was another song written and recorded during the sessions and left off the finished album. It was given to Rod Stewart for his album, A Spanner in the Works.


Additional musicians
  • Michael Kamenorchestration, conductor on "Wildflowers", "Time to Move On", "It's Good to Be King" and "Wake Up Time"
  • Phil Jones – percussion on "You Wreck Me" and "Cabin Down Below"
  • Carl Wilson – backing vocals on "Honey Bee"
  • John Pierce – bass on "Hard on Me"
  • Ringo Starr – drums on "To Find a Friend"
  • Marty Rifkin – pedal steel guitar on "House in the Woods"
  • Jim Horn, Brandon Fields, Greg Herbig, Kim Hutchcroft – saxophones on "House in the Woods"


  1. ^ AllMusic review
  2. ^ Robert Christgau review
  3. ^ Entertainment Weekly review
  4. ^ Strong, Martin C. (2006). The Essential Rock Discography. Edinburgh, UK: Canongate. p. 816. ISBN 978-1-84195-827-9. 
  5. ^ Graff, Gary; Durchholz, Daniel (eds) (1999). MusicHound Rock: The Essential Album Guide. Farmington Hills, MI: Visible Ink Press. p. 870. ISBN 1-57859-061-2. 
  6. ^ a b Album reviews at CD Universe
  7. ^ Rolling Stone review
  8. ^ "Tom Petty Wildflowers". Acclaimed Music. Retrieved December 26, 2014. 
  9. ^ Petty, Tom: Conversations with Tom Petty, page 142. Omnibus Press, 2005.
  10. ^ "100 Best Albums of the Nineties: Tom Petty, 'Wildflowers' | Rolling Stone | Lists". Rolling Stone. Retrieved 2011-08-13. 
  11. ^ "Superunknown: 50 Iconic Albums That Defined 1994". GuitarWorld.com. July 14, 2014. Retrieved July 14, 2014.