Fact Check

Did Lara Trump Sing 'I Won't Back Down' Off-Key During a Sky News TV Appearance?

"Now Lara, I cannot let you go without bringing up something I saw on your social media this week," Sky News Australia host Erin Molan said.

Published Oct 5, 2023

Lara Trump speaks during the annual Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) at the Gaylord National Resort Hotel And Convention Center on March 3, 2023 in National Harbor, Maryland. (Photo by Anna Moneymaker/Getty Images) (Anna Moneymaker/Getty Images)
Image Via Anna Moneymaker/Getty Images
A video posted on X authentically shows Lara Trump singing a very off-key rendition of "I Won't Back Down" during a TV appearance on Sky News Australia.

On Oct. 5, 2023, tech entrepreneur William LeGate posted a video on X that appeared to show Lara Trump singing a verse of the late Tom Petty's 1989 hit single "I Won't Back Down" – albeit in a very off-key fashion – during a TV appearance on Sky News Australia.

Lara Trump is the wife of Eric Trump, one of former U.S. President Donald Trump's sons.

"I Won't Back Down" was originally written by Petty and songwriter Jeff Lynne for Petty's album, "Full Moon Fever," according to AmericanSongwriter.com.

The video also received many more engagements after it was reposted by the @CalltoActivism account:

However, the audio in this video was manipulated.

In a DM on X, LeGate, who said he planned to launch his own company named LeGate Studios in 2024, told Snopes he had edited the fake version of the video's sound using the software Melodyne. "I’m a huge Tom Petty fan and was offended that Lara Trump stole his music without the permission of his estate," he told us.

A longer video published by the Sky News YouTube channel in late September depicted the original version of Lara Trump's vocals, which sounded more normal.

Lara Trump also posted a portion of her studio-recorded cover on her Instagram account:

This wasn't the first time the worlds of Petty and the Trumps had collided.

In 2020, Petty's family issued a public statement on social media after Petty's version of "I Won't Back Down" was used at one of then-President Trump's campaign rallies. Petty's family said that the usage was "in no way authorized" and called Trump's efforts for reelection a "campaign of hate."

For further reading, The Independent published details about another purported controversy surrounding Lara Trump's cover of Petty's song.


"Lara Trump Sings Cover Song on Sky News Australia." YouTube, 29 Sept. 2023, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Dmv8Ng5vLU4.

McHardy, Martha. "Lara Trump Thinks Her New Song Is Being Shadow-Banned." The Independent, 5 Oct. 2023, https://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/americas/lara-trump-new-song-tom-petty-donald-trump-b2424611.html.

Uitti, Jacob. "What Do the Lyrics of Tom Petty's Now-Politically-Charged Song 'I Won't Back Down' Mean?" American Songwriter, 16 June 2023, https://americansongwriter.com/what-do-the-lyrics-of-tom-pettys-now-politically-charged-song-i-wont-back-down-mean/.

Jordan Liles is a Senior Reporter who has been with Snopes since 2016.