' I love questions like this. Would you give up half of your songwriter's share to a big star? That is a tough question. First of all, let's pick the big star. If you are a girl in your teens or twenties, I would say the star is Taylor Swift. Taylor has had great success. Would you take the half and smile all the way to the bank? Or would it be a sore that never heals? Would you lay awake at night and be mad at yourself? Mad because you wrote all of the song and just because she is (Taylor Swift) she is allowed to steal half of your song. (If you let her.)
I am not saying that Taylor has or ever would do this? I read a story about a similar incident that happened. The star in the story was Elvis Presley. At the time this happened Elvis was the big cheese. Nobody was bigger and yielded more power. Elvis had a streak of number one hits. At this time he had nineteen number one hits and thought that this song could be another number one for him.
The song was written by Dolly Partron. The name of the song was "I will always love you." Did you notice Dolly didn't need a co-writer to write a hit? It was her song and she owned the whole enchilada. I will always love you was a number one hit for Dolly twice. It was a hit in 1974 and she re-released it in 1982 and it was a #1 country hit a second time.
Dolly heard that Elvis wanted to record her song. Colonel Tom Parker, (Elvis's manager) contacted Dolly and told her, it was a regular practice by Elvis to have songwriters sign over half of their publishing rights to any song the King was going to record. This was giving Elvis credit and money from future royalties on not only his version but also on anybody else's version of this song. Colonel Parker had met his match when he met Dolly.
She told Parker, " Well, now, it's already been a hit. I wrote it, and I've already published it. And this is the stuff I'm leaving for my family when I'm dead and gone." And he said. " I can't record it. Dolly looked at him and said, "I'm real sorry."
Twenty years later Whitney Houston recorded Dolly's song. I will Always Love you went to number one on the charts and stayed there for fourteen weeks. Dolly was later asked about her foresight of not giving half of her publishing rights to Elvis. She said, "When Whitney version came out. I made enough money to buy Graceland. I love stories where the underdog wins. Dolly was the underdog who was being bullied in this story and she came out like a big dog. This makes me smile.