I like dire straits, but this is no competition to me. Tom Petty has a whole catalog of rightfully celebrated music.
He knew how to make songs that were relevant and catchy, for 20+ years. Dire Straits has 2 or 3 that meet that criteria
I’d have to say Petty and the Heartbreakers. There was a day when I’d have likely chosen Dire Straits, though, out of some sort of guitar-centered snootiness. Knofler’s inimitable guitar style just makes them seem important, and they are great, but as I age I find myself (re)discovering the greatness of stuff I took for granted and didn’t think was so great in the late Eighties and early Nineties as I came of age. I have always been enthralled with music a couple decades before I came along, and found stuff that came out during my formative years campy, cloyingly trendy, and pat. I dismissed a lot of Petty’s stuff then—as I did, say, Hall & Oates, The Talking Heads, and stuff—but now I can see he was a strong songwriter and unique performer. There are many Tom Petty songs that feel as familiar and comforting as an old t-shirt when I hear them nowadays, though I don’t seek him out. He’s a music I accept passively and like, even love. I listen to Dire Straits the same way—if it “comes on” I will listen and like, but I do not, I think, have the same affection for Dire Straits stuff as I do Petty’s. That said, I’ll never really crank Petty’s stuff, except for maybe “American Girl,” but I WILL almost always crank “Sultans of Swing.” Anyway, my vote’s for Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers. A larger catalog of old t-shirt songs.