Here’s why you just saw skydivers at ACL Fest

Now, THAT’S a Tom Petty tribute.

Skydivers jump over Zilker Park at the Austin City Limits Music Festival in tribute to Tom Petty on Saturday October 7, 2017. JAY JANNER / AMERICAN-STATESMAN

At a little past 7 p.m. at Austin City Limits Music Festival on Saturday, archival footage of Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers playing “Free Fallin'” at the fest in 2006 began to play on the stage screens. At the Honda stage, electro-rock band Cut Copy was cut off in the middle of show-closer “Lights and Music,” in fact. But it was for the best of causes.

More: ACL Fest 2017: Musicians pay tribute to the late Tom Petty

A team of skydivers began to fall from the sky over Zilker Park to the tune of one of Petty’s most timeless songs. Sparks flew from the daredevils as the sun continued to set. Festival attendees looked up to the skies, phones aloft, many shouting the words to the song with gusto.

It was over almost as soon as it began. But in a weekend full of Petty tributes, hearing the man’s voice was a moment to remember.

 


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