"American Girl" is a rock song written by Tom Petty and recorded by Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers for their self-titled debut album in 1976. It was released as a single and did not chart in the United States, but peaked at No. 40 in the UK for the week ending August 27, 1977. It was re-released in 1994 as the second single from Petty's Greatest Hits album and peaked at No. 68 in the U.S. Cash Box Top 100.Despite limited chart success, "American Girl" became one of Petty's most popular songs and a staple of classic rock. It has been consistently rated as his best song and one of the best rock songs of all time, and has been called "more than a classic rock standard — it's practically part of the American literary canon." It has also been used in several movies and television shows, often during a scene in which a character, much like the protagonist in the song's lyrics, is "longing for something bigger than their current existence.""American Girl" was the last song performed in concert by Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers. They played it to close out the encore of their performance on September 25, 2017, at the Hollywood Bowl in Los Angeles, California, the final concert of their 40th Anniversary Tour. Petty died of complications from cardiac arrest after an accidental prescription medication overdose on October 2, just over a week later.
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