Troy Petty

Troy Petty

 Columbus, Ohio, USA

"Through stories of survival, escape, redemption and regret, tunesmith Troy Petty pens lyrics that sting as well as soothe atop a flawless mix of well-honed Indie and polished alternative pop."


For all the changes that native Chicagoan Troy Petty has gone through since his last release - 2012's primarily subdued Fairy Tale Pen, a collection of songs dating back three years themselves - it'd be foolish to assume that his songwriting wouldn't somehow be affected. None of these shifts are unheard of certainly, but each is tenuous and relatable: Dissolved connections with professional and personal relationships, moving into his original childhood home and back in with his parents, hopping from job to job, and relocating eventually to Ohio. But what's inspiring is how Petty has come out the other end not necessarily unscathed, but better. His music and production on this latest release Departure are more triumphant and his lyrics seem wiser, whether he's connecting with the listener, requesting needed empathy of a song's antagonist or talking himself through the steps needed to survive the trials he's so vividly documenting. To put it simply, Petty himself says Departure is about "letting go, listening to your intuition and finding your own meaning of 'comfort zone.'"

Though the immensely stirring title track wraps up the album, it's as good of a starting point as any for describing Petty's approach. Set to a tense, waltz-like march that simmers with determination to a stunning boil, the song was born in the bedroom he had as a kid, which ended up inspiring much of the album's material. "Musically, I felt I needed to find my identity in all the recent messes and what direction to go in, because for years I'd been tearing myself apart trying to create in just one medium: Playing acoustically on the road or electric. I decided to let all my notions (about what I thought everyone else wanted me to do most of my life) go, and the instrumentation came similarly, (almost) intuitively and with no rules or fears of crossing another sub-genre for the sake of identity or comfort."

Columbus resident Brian McGuckin often gives this project its heartbeat on drums, but otherwise this whole soundscape is directly Petty's. Performing all vocals, keyboards, bass and guitars himself on Departure, these songs sport real emotional muscle to coincide with the headstrong life lessons Petty brings to the table: Lead-track "All Ghosts" coasts bravely on a deep, pulsing rhythm before hitting a remarkable crescendo where it seems all previous versions of one's self that were once "afraid to fly" turn into "angels," free to meet their true calling; Augmented by an army of victorious strums and distant shouts, "Unfinished" is a commanding promise not to settle or die on the inside before the physical body does so;  "Motor Mind," as close to a full-on rocker as Departure allows, still finds time to step back and examine the artist's insomnia with gentle flourishes; "Set Me Free," as Petty explains, "hit me like a gospel hymn," and sounding like it came directly from a torturous desert, the tune adheres to the religious-meets-gothic nature of true journeymen like Johnny Cash. It's a brilliant, if crazed, plea for ultimate freedom.

Recorded at John Schwab Recording - where a wide range of world-renowned acts like Kiss, Peter Frampton and Gavin DeGraw have laid down material - Departure was helmed by engineer/producer Colin Coffey (Slash; Big & Rich) and was "a breakthrough experience... finally knowing where I belong creatively," remarks Petty. "Much of the feel of this album came from epiphany-like moments, (like) how I felt when I began doing music. Slowly and painfully over the years, I lost myself to the expectations of others in everything I did, and my art began showing signs of that. This album was a great jump-off piece for what's to come in the future."

In July, 2017 Departure was released as “DepartureS - An Extended Collection" including new material recorded live and released under German label Songs & Whispers. Supporting the release included a two month European tour with performances in Germany, Switzerland, Austria, Belgium and The Netherlands. 

This Fall, Petty joins three-time Grammy nominated drummer and producer and original founding member of Wilco, Ken Coomer to record the follow up “Director’s Cut” full length due out in the Spring of 2018 along with a US and European tour!



Written By: Troy Michael Petty


i see long lies gathering
all I would not conquer
and even though im lost
at seeing what you have taught
i am becoming
i am becoming

once i called her my own mistress
of love, light and virtue
but with each and every fault
i conformed then lost her
to our time becoming
all around
it was all around us

i see in what was lost, is now gathering
all i’ve ever offered
it’s all around
it’s all around us

Troy m petty - 9/8/11


Written By: Troy Petty

an instant high
lifts your hands above
then takes your innocence
and turns, turns you up-side down
then empty eyes will hurry the crime
can’t you find what it means to be all?

the real time ghost gives
an all time lie
it fakes all that it feels
into your real life
and the time gone
the time gone is an easy whore of thought
when you turn your blind side on

but don’t you worry
your sight will come again

A heavy heart can fall on any man
and all you’ve thought was thrown away
can come back again

don’t you worry
your time will come my friend
don’t you worry
your sight will come again

A heavy heart can fall on any man
don’t you worry
your sight will come again.

Troy Michael Petty


Written By: Troy Michael Petty

I see that you are soft
I see it in your walk
I see it from a distance
And I noticed that you’re tough
I see that you’re already breathing in
The certain some things you dream of
I notice you’re captured by
Something you don’t want to speak of
I see how you stand
But I can’t see where it comes from
For the impossible pose
You hold
No one could imagine something more beautiful
I didn’t want to grow old
Until I felt the way you kept me still
I see you’ve found a place in the true love maze
That i created from a pencil
Go ask fate what it knows
Go ask fate what it knows of us
And if the answers are empty
Then I will go without breaking trust

Just keep in mind
And keep in store
For something so much more

Keep me in mind
And keep me in store
For something so much more

Fools Rush

Written By: Troy Michael Petty

If I could fall
From the fate of my loneliness
I would follow
Your eyes into an infinite stare
With all your light I can swallow
And I’ll dream of you there..

And I would count all the moments
You’d wince
And time would tell when
You’re ready to give in
To all the suffering I hold
Just to show you
I’m so lucky to know you
Just lucky to know you..

So if the fool’s rush
I’m the foolish one
If I’m dumb enough
To just give up
Would you visit me?..
Come visit me and my heart
Come visit me in my heart.. with soul.

If I hadn’t fallen
Every time I was poisoned
I’d stand with cruel focus
And the weight on my shoulders
Would fall onto you..
And that’s one thing
I’d never want from you
And that’s one thing
I’d never want FOR you..

If the fool’s rush
I’m the foolish one
If I’m dumb enough
To just give up
Would you visit me?..
Come visit me and my heart
Come visit me in my heart.. with your song!!

Motor Mind

Written By: Troy Petty

My motor mind
A snapshot in motion
from a million eyes
I regret
never letting you

In my motor mind, I can’t sit tight

My motor eyes
play, pause, pretend, rewind
begin again
blink, hopelessly.. blink
In my motor mind
I can’t sit tight

In my motor mind
I can’t sit tight
for long!
In my motor mind
I can’t sit tight

I’m motorized
I don’t know how I sleep at night
My motor mind rolls all night long
All alone
I’m motorized
I don’t know how I sleep at night
My motor mind rolls all night long
All alone
(i apologize for seeming strange
and leaving you behind these eyes in pain)

My motor mind
my motor eyes
my motor mind.

Troy Petty


Written By: Troy Petty

A new day’s habit
expires in minutes
look where you are
deep enough in it?
Enough said to uniform your world
all comforts are worn
yet none of them are your’s

If you stay, your reason
will divide into millions
look where you are
can you see past the deep end?
If all you’ve served never cared you’d return
then all you’ve learned is to serve
well enough to keep you
looking up, but never see
look up, but never see

So close to departure
So close to what could be

The World, The World!
The World is calling you

Don’t lose your way by
just getting by
if all things come to an end
this ride will be the finest escape
from all the doubt
eating you up.
You’re nowhere until you’re found.

Make your move that makes them see
Make your move that makes them see
you’re so close to departure
so close to what could be
the World, The world !
The world is calling you!


2010/10/10 - "True Love Maze" The Last Dark Show
2012/12/12 - "Fairy Tale Pen"

2015/6/5 - Departure

Streaming Tracks:

"Motor Mind"

"Eleven Tears"

"Down Time"
"Mr Run On"
"Priceless Fool"
"Never Again Forever"

Set List

Acoustic solo Performances:

Motor Mind



Down Time         





Fools Rush

Even Now