GRAMMY-winning instrumentalist/songwriter Benmont Tench of Tom Petty & The Heartbreakers recently participated in an installment of the GRAMMY Museum's The Drop series. Before an intimate audience at the Museum's Clive Davis Theater, Tench discussed the making of his debut solo album You Should Be So Lucky. He also performed a brief set, including the album's title track.
"We had no time to make the record," said Tench regarding the making of You Should Be So Lucky. "We had 11 days to do the entire thing so I had to [work with] people who listened."
A Florida native, Tench co-founded Tom Petty & The Heartbreakers in 1976 with Petty, Ron Blair, Mike Campbell, and Stan Lynch. Following the release of their acclaimed 1976 self-titled debut album and 1978's You're Gonna Get It!, Tom Petty & The Heartbreakers released a string of Top 10 albums, including Damn The Torpedoes (1979, No. 2), Hard Promises (1981, No. 5), Long After Dark (1982, No. 9), and Southern Accents (1985, No. 7). They received their first GRAMMY nomination for 1991's Into The Great Wide Open, which featured the Top 30 hit "Learning To Fly." Tench picked up his first career GRAMMY for Best Long Form Music Video for 2008 for the documentary film Runnin' Down A Dream, which chronicles the storied history of the band.
Released on Feb. 8, You Should Be So Lucky was produced by GRAMMY-nominated producer/engineer Glyn Johns. The album features contributions from GRAMMY winner Don Was (bass), GRAMMY-nominated producer/engineer Ethan Johns (guitar/drums), Blake Mills (guitar), and Jeremy Stacey (drums), as well as collaborations with Ryan Adams, Gillian Welch, David Rawlings, Joel Jerome, Petty, and Ringo Starr. In addition to covers of the traditional country/blues song "Corrina, Corrina" and Dylan's "Duquesne Whistle," You Should Be So Lucky features 10 original songs written by Tench, including the title track, "Veronica Said" and "Why Don't You Quit Leavin Me Alone."
Also a sought-after session musician, Tench has worked with GRAMMY winners such as Johnny Cash, Elvis Costello, Sheryl Crow, Bob Dylan, Bonnie Raitt, and the Rolling Stones, among others.
Upcoming GRAMMY Museum events include Reel To Reel: Mystery Girl Unraveled (May 20), Spotlight: Jamestown Revival (May 28), The Drop: Matisyahu (June 4), An Evening With John Mayall (June 5), and A Conversation With Grace Slick (June 17).