Once again, we raid our cassingle casselection. looking for an overlooked song:
Artist: Tom Petty
Song: “Zombie Zoo,” 1989
What happened: Even though Petty wrung a remarkable seven* singles out of Full Moon Fever, the album-closing “Zombie Zoo” wasn’t one of them. Maybe the label figured that the market was already too Feverish, or that the tongue-in-cheek song was too lightweight to make it on radio. Or maybe, as Petty himself has often vented in interviews, the powers-that-be feared blowback from the then-powerful zombie lobbies.
Why it should have been a hit: “Zoo” condenses everything great about Petty’s late-’80s output–the power-pop choruses, the just-shy-of-slick production, and the jaundiced story-telling–in just under three minutes:
* UPDATE: Well, maybe not quite. See comments below.
Tom Petty – Zombie Zoo [MP3, link expired]