Vampire Weekend’s Ezra Koenig pays tribute to his “favourite song”, Tom Petty’s ‘Free Fallin’

Petty passed away last week (October 2) aged 66.

Ezra Koenig of Vampire Weekend has paid tribute to the late Tom Petty by dedicating his Beats 1 show ‘Time Crisis’ to the recently deceased artist.

Petty – known for his band Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers – passed away on Monday (October 2) at the age of 66. Reports suggest that he suffered a cardiac arrest.

Koenig was joined by painter Jake Longstreth to discuss Petty and his works. The show, which you can listen to here, features a long discussion of Petty’s seminal track ‘Free Fallin’ which Koenig reveals to be his favourite song.


“He’s talking about life being in free fall”, Koenig posits, “it’s harsh”. An alternative to the usual interpretation of the track being about freedom and liberty.

The two artists also discuss Vampire Weekend’s multiple attempts at covering Petty tracks and whether Petty could be classified ‘frat rock’.

Read more: See more tribute to Tom Petty here

Meanwhile, Koenig recently spoke about working with Kanye West and explained how the process has influenced his band’s new album.


Koenig’s band released their third album ‘Modern Vampires Of The City’ in 2013, with the singer recently stating that they’re “80% done” on its follow-up, which currently has the working title of ‘Mitsubishi Macchiato’.

“I was, like, ‘I like this atmosphere. I need to loosen up.'” Ezra begins: “So I’ve been working with this 68-year-old guitarist, Greg Leisz, and this 18-year-old guitarist, Steve Lacy. A bunch of other people have been coming in and out. Now we’re moving into the final stage where it’s about, ‘How do you take all that energy and reduce it to the sound of the album?’ It’s tricky.”


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