“Free Girl” no longer?
Well, sort of. Less than two weeks after making “Free Girl Now,” a new song off Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers upcoming album, available for free at the wildly popular MP3.com site, Petty and his label, Warner Bros. have consented to pull the downloadable sound file. Just last weekend, MP3.com CEO Michael Robertson had touted that “Free Girl Now” had already chalked up more than 150,000 downloads in a little over a week during an address given at the 1999 New York Music and Internet Expo being held in New York City.
Apparently the strong Internet interest was too much for Warner Bros., who had remained mum when the track was unveiled on the Web the first week of March. Representatives for Tom Petty and Warner Bros. had no comment about the decision to remove the song from the MP3 site, although the label has posted a Real Audio version of “Free Girl Now” at Tom Petty’s official website (www.wbr.com/tompetty).
Petty and the Heartbreakers still have four concerts left in their two-week stint at the Fillmore in San Francisco, and will appear as the musical guests on “Saturday Night Live” on April 10, three days before the group’s new album, “Echo,” arrives in stores.