The Best Tom Petty Covers, From John Mayer to Christina Perri

Revisit the late star's iconic hits with help from his famous fans

By Samantha Schnurr Oct 03, 2017 7:39 PMTags

As fans all over the world mourn the loss of Tom Petty, his music is putting America at ease. 

With iconic hits like "Free Fallin'" and "American Girl," the Grammy-winning rock star, who died Monday night at 66 years old, has left behind a legacy of songs that are comforting a nation—his daughter included. 

"My father loves music more than anything and always put music first," his daughter AnnaKim Violette Petty wrote in tribute on Instagram. "It's going to be healing to know I will never go a day without hearing his music."

She's not the only one grateful for the melodies her father left behind. "Musicians leave behind much more than records," longtime fan John Mayer wrote on his social media of the late musician. "They leave with us a shared dream space. A place we can continue to visit, even if after its creator is gone. Tom Petty's California is my favorite California."

As the tributes pour in for the legend and fans revisit their favorite tracks from the rocker, here are some of the stars he inspired performing his hits in their own special way: 

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1. John Mayer "Free Fallin'"

Arguably one of the most famous covers of Petty's classic, the video of the musician's rendition of the 1989 hit has accumulated more than 59 million views. 

2. Melissa Etheridge "Refugee"

25 years after Petty released "Refugee" with the Heartbreakers, Etheridge tried her hand at the beloved track for her Greatest Hits album. 

3. The Goo Goo Dolls "American Girl"

"American Girl" would become popular with a handful of other bands—including this time with Petty's fellow rock stars. 

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4. Christina Perri "Breakdown" 

Petty's songs attracted fans of all ages, including the songstress, who in 2011, performed "Breakdown" as a part of her Lovestrong Tour set. 

5. Daughtry "Free Fallin'"

 American Idol alum Chris Daughtry slowed things down with his emotional version of the hit track. 

6. Elle King "American Girl"

The Grammy nominee tried her hand at a modern version of the hit in 2015. 

7. Pearl Jam "I Won't Back Down"

As one fan wrote of this rendition online, "I am a huge Tom Petty fan, but I must say Eddie has done a really beautiful version of this song."