Adria Petty Opens Up About Her Dad in New Interview

Tom Petty
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Samir Hussein/Getty Images

Few people are thinking about Tom Petty's legacy, now that he's not here, quite like his daughter Adria. An artist and director in her own right who's shot videos for Beyoncé and Regina Spektor, she also executive produced the documentary Somewhere You Feel Free, an intimate look at her father's solo album Wildflowers.

READ MORE: Drop Everything and Check Out the New Tom Petty Documentary

She recently sat down with New York for an eye-opening chat about Petty's legacy, and some of the things she said were pretty eye-opening. Read the whole chat here and dig our favorite highlights below:

Wildflowers is her favorite album by her dad. "Somebody puts Full Moon Fever in front of you, or Damn the Torpedoes, or the first Heartbreakers album, and you’re like, This is the greatest album. But Wildflowers is the greatest album, I think, from a songwriting perspective...It’s a confessional, novelistic, Americana masterpiece...It’s his autobiography. It’s his beautiful autobiographical work. It’s my favorite album in terms of feeling the closest to my dad."

READ MORE: Among the Wildflowers: Tom Petty's Greatest Hits

A dedicated team helps make decisions regarding Petty's art and music. "The way we’ve been doing it has been pretty organic. It starts with the music and we take it to the band and all of the confidants, which we internally call the Council of Elders. [Laughs.] It’s the band members, roadies, engineers, and our favorite A&R guy at Warner Bros."

They'll never get political. "Every Republican politician wants to use 'I Won’t Back Down' while campaigning. That’s pretty much a definite no."

READ MORE: April 1989: Tom Petty Goes Solo with 'Full Moon Fever'

Tom wanted his music to be represented in a "diverse and inclusive" way - even if it was commercial. "I think there’s a sacredness to the work that the band did that we’re really protective of. But still, my dad was like, 'Look, when I die, if you guys want to do commercials, please don’t think that I’ll be pissed. Do it.' It’s our job to be great students and gentle handlers, not egomaniacs."

She and her family are open to anything "as long as it's contributing to humanity, and it's something of quality." "Do I personally want a jukebox musical about Tom Petty on Broadway? Not really. But if somebody’s got an amazing take on it, if it gets the music to a lot of people, if it gets people rocking out to the music in a cool way, and if it’s done with quality? Absolutely."

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