Proving once again that he’s a gentleman, as well as a rock and roll legend, Tom Petty has come forward to let one and all know that he bears no ill will towards Sam Smith, reports WRAL News. This statement comes on the heels of news that Sam Smith has agreed to pay Tom Petty compensation for the accidental use of “I Won’t Back Down” in his own song, “Stay With Me.” The arrangement was made in an out of court settlement, when it was discovered that Sam Smith’s hit closely resembled the classic rock song, written by Petty and Jeff Lynne. In addition to royalty payments, Tom Petty, as well as Mr. Lynne, are also co-credited on the “Stay With Me” track.
As news of the incident reached the public, Tom posted his feelings about Sam Smith and the incident in general on his website.
“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.”
Huffington Post reports that the incident arose as the Sam Smith song was released and a similarity in the notes, chords, rhythms, and pitches was observed. The settlement reached between Mr. Smith and Mr. Petty stipulates that, although Petty and Jeff Lynne will receive royalties and credit on “Stay With Me,” they will not receive an award if the song wins at the Grammys on February 8. “Stay With Me” is nominated for six 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,” said Bill Freimuth, the Recording Academy’s senior vice president.
For those interested in reading about the Petty/Smith incident in greater detail, Inquisitr reported on the mishap as it happened.