The Fonda’s annual Petty Fest has become a freewheeling, high-wattage jam for Los Angeles’ singer-songwriters. This year’s version marked the 40th anniversary of the founding of Tom Petty & the Heartbreakers, and the star power was commensurate with the occasion.
Kristen Wiig, fresh off her summer of bustin’ ghosts and confronting existential terror as a hot dog bun, was the surprise guest during Norah Jones’ top-billed turn at the event.
The actor joined Jones on duets of Petty’s “You Don’t Know How It Feels” and “Time to Move On.” Wiig held up a pretty, pristine high harmony, and sounded great with Jones’ lower, smokier register.
The rest of the night was packed with luminaries from the L.A. folk-rock scene and beyond. Other performers included Dhani Harrison (son of George), Jakob Dylan, Cory Chisel, Lissie and Brandon Boyd, alongside great L.A. acts like Big Black Delta and Allison Pierce.
The show continues Wednesday night with a Round 2 of covers and surprise appearances. For Petty fans and beyond, it’s probably worth standing your ground in line to get in.