Sam Smith accepts the award for best new artist at the 57th annual Grammy Awards in Los Angeles, California February 8, 2015. (Reuters Photo/Lucy Nicholson)

Sam Smith Wins Grammy for Best New Artist

FEBRUARY 09, 2015

Los Angeles. British soul singer Sam Smith on Sunday won the Grammy for Best New Artist, the first of the top awards handed out on music's biggest night.

Smith, who won a global following in a matter of months for his song "Stay With Me," is in a position to be the first artist in more than three decades to win in all four top categories.

"Oh my gosh. I've got to try and say something now without crying. Thank you," Smith told the audience at the Staples Center in Los Angeles.

Smith beat out a field that included the Australian rapper Iggy Azalea, the three-sister California band Haim and country singer Brandy Clark.

With a rich tenor voice and no-frills concert performance style, Smith has begun to sell out arenas. His debut album, "In The Lonely Hour," was 2014's third top seller in the United States.

As his star rose, Smith quietly added Tom Petty to the writing credits on "Stay With Me" over the similarities in vocal delivery to the rocker's 1989 hit "I Won't Back Down." 

Smith, who was born in 1992, said he was unfamiliar with the song and Petty said he had no hard feelings, believing the resemblance was an accident.

Agence France-Presse