The annual music festival, Tom Petty Birthday Bash, goes virtual on Friday, October 23rd, to celebrate Tom Petty’s 70th birthday.
The all-star tribute to Tom Petty that the world has been waiting for is finally happening. Tom Petty Birthday Bash founders, Jason and Sarah Hedges have been working with Red Light Management, the Tom Petty Estate and Petty Legacy to bring an incredible celebration to honor Gainesville’s hometown hero.
“My band has been paying tribute to Tom Petty for more than a decade and now it’s been three years since the creation of the Tom Petty Birthday Bash,” said Jason Hedges, founder of Heavy Petty and Tom Petty Birthday Bash. Gainesville is an integral part of Tom’s life and with the presence of our hometown music festival, the family wanted to support and include us in Tom’s 70th Birthday Bash.”
The Hedges will be kicking the festival off on Sirius XM Tom Petty Radio channel 31 at 4:30 p.m. ET. Emerging and local artists will cover deep cuts curated by the duo. Bash alumni like, Low Cut Connie, Edan Archer, Hannah Harber, The High Divers, Heavy Petty, Jake Thistle and more will be featured. Along with bands they dig like, Larkin Poe, Starcrawler, and Emma Swift.
Following will be Sirius XM hosts, David Frick and Mark Felsot with guest performances and interviews by Grace Potter, Jason Isbell, The Killers and more. At 7:00 p.m. ET, fans can watch an all-star lineup, featuring Sheryl Crow, Stephen Stills, Lukas Nelson, Norah Jones, Mike Campbell, Benmont Tench and many, many more. Watch on Tompetty.com or Tom Petty Facebook, presented by Amazon Music and Twitch.
Normally, festival-goers from around the world flock to Depot Park around Petty’s birthday, October 20, for a free multi-day music festival featuring national acts, emerging artists and local bands on two different stages. This year, due to the pandemic, the music festival will be a virtual festival experience, presented by Sirius XM, Amazon Music and Twitch.
"We feel so honored to be part of this big celebration,” said Sarah Hedges, Co-founder of the Tom Petty Birthday Bash. “The Bash happened so organically in 2017 and the fans make it happen every year. We truly believe in the healing power of music and that music brings people together, no matter the distance.”
The festival is also dedicated to bringing awareness and providing support to a local Gainesville program called UF Health Shands Arts in Medicine. Every day at UF Health, professional musicians trained to work in the healthcare setting, impact the lives of patients and staff by performing music at the bedside.
In 2018, the Bash was able to create The Music in Medicine fund with the proceeds from the festival to help ensure sustainable funding for the work of these talented musicians, and the transformative work they do. The virtual festival will be a platform for donations and fans can donate at www.tompettybirthdaybash.com/donate