You have to hear and see this awesome moment: How Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers covered an American garage rock classic during their 1991 concert in Oakland, California.
The song is Count Five’s “Psychotic Reaction,” a hit in the summer of 1966.
“Psychotic Reaction” opens with these lines:
“I feel depressed, I feel so bad
‘Cause you’re the best girl that I ever had
I can’t get your love, I can’t get a fraction
Uh-oh, little girl, psychotic reaction”
The third line, ending with “I can’t get a fraction,” is lyrical brilliance. All the Count Five members received credit for writing the song and they could have referenced the Rolling Stones early on by using “I can’t get your love, I can’t get satisfaction” in the third line.
A lot of people think “I can’t get satisfaction” is in the third line. I did for more than 50 years.
Instead, the Stones’ influence shows up in the 10th line: “I can’t get your love, I can’t get satisfaction.”
Petty and the Heartbreakers not only cover the song, they capture it and make it their own.
The lead-up to the song is Petty’s epic two-minute bit in which The Psychedelic Dragon presents The Psychedelic Harmonica and then the band tears into four minutes of mind-bending sonic blasts.
The performance, which features two instrumental breaks, is a rave-up of live and raw power with Petty on harmonica, drummer Stan Lynch on vocals and Mike Campbell on lead guitar.
Listen up. You’ll get satisfaction.
John E. Bialas lives in Gulfport, Miss., where he writes about music, books, food, his basset hound and much more here