Song Meanings from Songwriters

Welcome to UnmaskUs, featuring song meanings provided by the songwriters themselves.

Featured Song Meaning

“The ‘American Girl’ is just one example of this character I write about a lot – the small-town kid who knows there’s more out there for them but gets fucked up trying to find it. Like the song says, she was raised on promises. I’ve always felt sympathetic towards her.

“I wrote it in a tiny apartment in Encino. It was right next to the freeway and the cars sometimes sounded like waves from the ocean, which is why there’s the line about the waves crashing on the beach. This song marked the start of me writing about people who are longing for something else in life and are determined to get it.”

Tom Petty (770/771)

RIP Tom.

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