Runnin' Down a Dream" by Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers


"Runnin' Down a Dream" by Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers is one of the most iconic rock songs of the 20th century. It was released in 1989 as part of their album "Full Moon Fever" and has since become a staple of classic rock radio. The song is a testament to Tom Petty's songwriting skills and his ability to craft a timeless rock anthem that speaks to generations of music lovers.

The Lyrics

The lyrics to "Runnin' Down a Dream" follow the journey of the protagonist as he chases his dreams and pursues his passions. The song is filled with vivid imagery and metaphors that paint a picture of the open road and the endless possibilities that lie ahead. The opening line, "It was a beautiful day, the sun beat down, I had the radio on, I was drivin'" sets the scene for the adventure that is about to unfold.

The chorus of the song serves as a rallying cry for anyone who has ever had a dream and chased it relentlessly. The line "runnin' down a dream that never would come to me" speaks to the resilience and determination of the human spirit, and the desire to never give up on something that matters.

The song also features a guitar solo that is nothing short of legendary. Petty's distinctive vocal style and Mike Campbell's masterful guitar work combine to create a sonic landscape that is both epic and intimate at the same time.

The Music

The music of "Runnin' Down a Dream" is quintessential Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers. The song features a driving beat, catchy guitar riffs, and a killer chorus that is impossible not to sing along to.

One of the standout features of the song is the use of the 12-string Rickenbacker guitar, which gives the song its distinctive sound. The guitar riff is instantly recognizable and has become one of the most iconic guitar riffs in the history of rock music.

The production of the song is also worth mentioning. The album was produced by Jeff Lynne, who also played a major role in the creation of the song. Lynne's production style is characterized by lush harmonies and a focus on melody, which is evident in "Runnin' Down a Dream."

The Legacy

"Runnin' Down a Dream" has become a staple of classic rock radio and has been covered by countless musicians over the years. The song's enduring popularity is a testament to its timeless quality and its appeal to music lovers of all ages.

The song has also been used in numerous movies and TV shows, including the opening credits of the movie "Jerry Maguire." The use of the song in popular culture has helped to cement its place in the pantheon of great rock songs.


"Runnin' Down a Dream" is a masterpiece of rock music that has stood the test of time. Its powerful lyrics, unforgettable guitar riff, and iconic chorus have made it one of the most beloved songs in the history of rock. Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers created a true classic with this song, and its legacy will continue to inspire and entertain music lovers for generations to come.