Stop Draggin' My Heart Around

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to navigation Jump to search
"Stop Draggin' My Heart Around"
Stop Draggin' My Heart Around cover.jpg
Single by Stevie Nicks & Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers
from the album Bella Donna
B-side"Kind of Woman"
ReleasedJuly 8, 1981
GenreBlues rock
Stevie Nicks & Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers singles chronology
"Stop Draggin' My Heart Around"
"Leather and Lace"

"Stop Draggin' My Heart Around" is a song by Stevie Nicks, the first single from her debut solo album Bella Donna (1981). The track is the album's only song that was neither written nor co-written by Nicks. Written by Tom Petty and Mike Campbell as a Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers song, Jimmy Iovine, who was also working for Stevie Nicks at the time, arranged for her to sing on it.[1] Petty sang with Nicks in the chorus and bridge, while his entire band (save Ron Blair, whose bass track was played by Donald "Duck" Dunn instead) played on the song.

A performance of the song in the studio was used as the promotional video. The video was the 25th video to be played on MTV's launch date on August 1, 1981.[2] Petty and Nicks also sang together on the songs "Insider" (from Petty's album Hard Promises (1981)) and "I Will Run to You" (from Nicks' album The Wild Heart (1983)), and frequently performed impromptu live versions of these and 1960s classic "Needles and Pins" in many shows through the 1980s.

As of 2017, "Stop Draggin' My Heart Around" remains a mainstay of Stevie Nicks's solo performances, and on July 9, 2017, Nicks performed the song together with Petty and the Heartbreakers at the British Summer Time festival at Hyde Park in London,[3] in what turned out to be their final performance of the song together before Petty's death in October 2017.

The song peaked at No. 3 on the American Billboard Hot 100 for six consecutive weeks. However, in the United Kingdom, the song only managed to peak at No. 50. The song also appeared in the drama film Taps (1981).


In a November 2003 interview with Songfacts, Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers guitarist and primary songwriter Mike Campbell explained the song's origins:

"Stop Draggin' My Heart Around" was a song that I had written the music and Tom had written the words. The Heartbreakers had recorded a version of it with Jimmy Iovine, and Jimmy being the entrepreneur that he was, he was working with Stevie, and I guess he asked Tom if she could try it, and it just developed from there.

We cut the track as a Heartbreakers record and when she decided to do it we used that track and she came in and sang over it. It became a duet. It's basically all the Heartbreakers on that record.[4]

The lyrics are about a woman who feels weighed down by relationships and wants to part despite a strong sentimental attachment to her lover. The melody is described by All Music as "dark and sinister",[5] probably because of the dense drumming of Stan Lynch which is the most prominent feature of the song's rhythm. Apart from the intro before the first verse and a solo following the second verse (where there is some fairly heavy riffing), however, the guitar sound is laid-back in typical Heartbreakers style. The song was originally recorded for Petty's album Hard Promises, but the producers felt the song came from a female point of view and it was left unreleased until it was agreed to be put on the Bella Donna album instead. A demo version of the song, recorded without Nicks, was eventually released on Petty's boxed set Playback (1995).

Single release formats[edit]

"Stop Draggin' My Heart Around" was released as a 7" vinyl single in the picture sleeve featured above in many territories. Promo 7" singles were also released in some territories, including the United States, in the same picture sleeve, but the disc featured the title track on both sides.

A highly collectable 12" promo single in a unique glossy sleeve was released in the United States.[citation needed]



Additional musicians


Cover versions[edit]

The song was parodied by "Weird Al" Yankovic as "Stop Draggin' My Car Around" on his debut album "Weird Al" Yankovic (1983).

The song was also covered by the post-grunge band Puddle of Mudd for their cover album Re:(disc)overed (2011).

American singer-songwriter Sharon Van Etten and American indie rock band Shearwater performed a version of the song in March 2012 for The A.V. Club's "A.V. Undercover" series.[16]

Tim Rogers and Rebecca Barnard covered the song in series 4 (2006) of RocKwiz.

J Mascis and Adalita Srsen performed the song on "Episode 146" (2013) of RocKwiz.[17]

Jimmy Fallon and Stevie Nicks performed the song in a humorous recreation of the 1981 music video on The Tonight Show on April 9, 2014.[18]

Devon Allman covered the song in his debut album Turquoise (2013).

Rock Band 3[edit]

It was made available to download on February 11, 2011, for use in the Rock Band 3 music gaming platform in both Basic rhythm, and PRO mode which utilizes real guitar/bass guitar, and MIDI compatible electronic drum kits/keyboards in addition to vocals.


  1. ^ "Stop Draggin' My Heart Around by Stevie Nicks and Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers". Retrieved 2016-10-25.
  2. ^ Graham, Mark. "The First 30 Videos That Played On MTV". Retrieved 19 January 2014.
  3. ^ "Fans delirious as Stevie Nicks joins Tom Petty on stage". BBC News. Retrieved July 10, 2017.
  4. ^ "Mike Campbell". Songfacts. Retrieved January 22, 2018.
  5. ^ Matthew Greenwald. "Stop Draggin' My Heart Around - Stevie Nicks | Song Info". AllMusic. Retrieved 2016-10-25.
  6. ^ Kent, David (1993). Australian Chart Book 1970–1992. St Ives, New South Wales: Australian Chart Book. ISBN 0-646-11917-6.
  7. ^ "50 Singles". RPM. Toronto. 35 (10). October 3, 1981. Retrieved July 19, 2013.
  8. ^ " – Stevie Nicks with Tom Petty & The Heartbreakers – Stop Draggin' My Heart Around". Top 40 Singles. Retrieved July 19, 2013.
  9. ^ " – Stevie Nicks with Tom Petty & The Heartbreakers – Stop Draggin' My Heart Around" (in Dutch). Single Top 100. Retrieved July 19, 2013.
  10. ^ "SA Charts 1965 – 1989 Songs S". South African Rock Lists. Retrieved August 22, 2019.
  11. ^ "Stevie Nicks". Official Charts Company. Retrieved July 19, 2013.
  12. ^ "Stevie Nicks Chart History (Hot 100)". Billboard. Retrieved May 9, 2013.
  13. ^ "Stevie NIcks – Awards". AllMusic. Rovi Corporation. Retrieved July 19, 2013.
  14. ^ "Top 100 Singles of 1981". RPM. Toronto. 35 (22). December 26, 1981. Retrieved July 19, 2013.
  15. ^ "Billboard Hot 100 1981". Billboard. New York. 93 (51): 60. December 26, 1981. Retrieved July 19, 2013.
  16. ^ "Sharon Van Etten and Shearwater cover "Stop Draggin' My Heart Around"". Retrieved March 25, 2013.
  17. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2016-03-04. Retrieved 2013-06-29.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  18. ^ "YouTube". YouTube. Retrieved 2016-10-25.

External links[edit]