Song: “Love Is a Long Road”

A hidden gem provides the score to a long-awaited video game release trailer.

Grand Theft Auto is one of the most successful video game franchises ever, having shipped more then 410 million units over its 22 years of existence and multiple versions across platforms.

Now, after a decade-long hiatus, the game is back with Grand Theft Auto VI, one of the most-anticipated game releases of all time. 

The song leading the charge — via an online trailer that set the record as the most viewed video on YouTube in any 24-hour period — is Tom Petty’s 1989 classic, “Love Is a Long Road,” a song which was released as the B-side to “Free Fallin’,” and only in the UK. 

Despite a limited release, the song peaked at #7 on the Billboard Album Rock Tracks chart that year. One critic described the song as reminiscent of the Who’s classics “Baba O’Reilly” and “Won’t Get Fooled Again.” Rolling Stone ranked it #38 on a list of Petty’s Top 50 songs.

Appropriately, the chords and initial keys sound were inspired by a motorcycle shifting gears. Heartbreakers’ guitarist Mike Campbell was heavily into motorbikes at the time, and some sequence of shifting and engine tone caught his imagination. Petty said the song was written in no time flat, as the metaphor of a long road came naturally, as well.

Petty fandom appears elsewhere in the trailer, with a “Petty Forever” rainbow sticker placed on the door the characters break through toward the end of the video (see below).

Grand Theft Auto is made by Rockstar Games, so it all makes sense.

The video is below, and full of Florida-level nonsense, so hold on tight.

Because, as we all know, love is a long road . . .


You can also enjoy a full live version of the song, which helps show how strong harmonies feature:

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