Sam Smith has reportedly agreed to pay out royalties to TOM PETTY and JEFF LYNNE over his hit single STAY WITH ME.
Most Tom Petty fans are, and I bet Tom himself at some point was saying "who the f$%k is Sam Smith?!?!?" Stay With Me was released April 14, 2014. And fans of the song were quick to point out similarities between Stay With Me and the 1989 song I Won't Back Down by Tom Petty. Because people have actually heard of Tom Petty.
Petty and Lynne wrote I Won't Back Down, and The Sun on Sunday reports they will now both receive a writing credit on Smith's track, which is up for Best Pop Performance and Record of the Year at the Grammy Awards in Los Angeles next month on February 15th. It's been reported that Tom and Jeff will each get 12.5% of the royalties generated by the song.
Like most Tom Petty fans, I never heard this song until somebody said it sounds like I Won't Back Down... Watch the video on YouTube.
"Since Lynne and Petty didn't do any new writing for this work, we are considering their original work to have been interpolated by Napier, Phillips and Smith for 'Stay With Me,'" says Bill Freimuth, the Recording Academy's senior vice president, awards. "Lynne and Petty will not be considered nominees nor will they be considered Grammy recipients, should the song win. Rather, they would be given certificates to honor their participation in the work, just as any other writers of sampled or interpolated work."
Message From Tom Petty
"About the Sam Smith thing. Let me say I have never had any hard feelings toward Sam. All my years of songwriting have shown me these things can happen. Most times you catch it before it gets out the studio door but in this case it got by. Sam’s people were very understanding of our predicament and we easily came to an agreement. The word lawsuit was never even said and was never my intention. And no more was to be said about it. How it got out to the press is beyond Sam or myself. Sam did the right thing and I have thought no more about this. A musical accident no more no less. In these times we live in this is hardly news. I wish Sam all the best for his ongoing career. Peace and love to all."
Tom Petty has always been a man of class. Again, with his words "The word lawsuit was never even said..." Tom tells people to STFU without actually saying STFU.