Taylor Swift on Tom Petty influence: “He represented a kind of songwriting I idolised”

"It said so much in the lyrics, the concepts, the stories."

The singer Taylor Swift has opened up about her love and adoration for Tom Petty.

Speaking to Rolling Stone magazine, Swift said that her own style had been heavily influenced by Petty, praising his “complex simplicity”.

The Tom Petty NME obituary: 1950 – 2017

“To me, Tom Petty represented a kind of songwriting I idolised: complex simplicity,” she said. “It said so much in the lyrics, the concepts, the stories, the message, the nuances … but always brought you back to a hook that got stuck in everyone’s head.”

The Ultimate Tom Petty Playlist

A playlist featuring Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers, Tom Petty and Traveling Wilburys

The musician also admitted that Petty’s had inspired her to pick up the guitar, so she could learn ‘Free Fallin’’.

Swift recorded a cover of the Tom Petty classic ‘American Girl’ in 2009. Listen below:


Tom Petty died earlier this week after suffering a cardiac arrest, aged 66. Tributes for the rock legend have come flooding in, with Bruce Springsteen dedicating his preview concert for his Broadway show to Petty.

It was recently announced that Taylor Swift had been nominated for six MTV EMA 2017 awards, after her comeback single, ‘Look What You Made Me Do’ smashed multiple streaming records when it was released earlier this year.