Singer Ed Sheeran To Go On Trial in the US over “Let’s Get It On” Copyright complaint
Singer Ed Sheeran is scheduled to go on trial in the US over a Let's Get It On copyright complaint.
Singer Ed Sheeran is scheduled to go on trial in the US over a Let’s Get It On copyright complaint.
Edward Christopher Sheeran born 17 February 1991 is an English singer-songwriter and musician. Born in Halifax, West Yorkshire and raised in Framlingham, Suffolk, he began writing songs around the age of eleven.
In early 2011, Sheeran independently released the extended play, No. 5 Collaborations Project. He signed with Asylum Records the same year.
He is accused of copying the Marvin Gaye classic Thinking Out Loud for his 2014 hit song.
After a federal judge denied the pop star’s requests to dismiss the protracted copyright dispute, Ed Sheeran will go on trial in the US on allegations that he plagiarized his 2014 hit song Thinking Out Loud from Marvin Gaye’s Let’s Get It On.
Sheeran’s attorneys had contended that the lawsuit was illegal because the similarities between the two songs’ parts were not sufficiently noticeable to warrant copyright protection in the first place.
They provided samples of other songs with comparable characteristics, such as The Temptations’ Since I Lost My Baby.
However, US District Judge Louis Stanton stated that Sheeran would have to testify before a jury of his peers because there was “no bright-line rule” for resolving such issues.
The judge’s conclusion was supported by a debate between musical specialists.
“Although the two musical compositions are not identical, a jury could find that the overlap between the songs’ combination of chord progression and harmonic rhythm is very close,” Stanton said.
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A date for the civil trial, which will be held in Manhattan, has not yet been determined, but it is anticipated to be one of prominence.
Sheeran was exonerated of plagiarism in a separate lawsuit in London in April involving his chart-topping 2017 song Shape of You.
A business by the name of Structured Asset Sales (SAS), which purchased a share of the estate of Let’s Get It On co-author Ed Townsend, first filed the claim for Thinking Out Loud in 2018.
It sought $100m (£90m) in damages, alleging that Sheeran and his co-writer Amy Wadge “copied and exploited, without authorisation or credit,” the 1973 Gaye song, “including but not limited to the melody, rhythms, harmonies, drums, bass line, backing chorus, tempo, syncopation and looping”.
Stanton ruled that jurors must decide whether SAS can include concert revenue in damages, rejecting Sheeran’s argument that ticket sales were not tied to the alleged infringement. Sheeran’s 2014-15 tour brought in $150m in gross revenue, according to the music industry trade publication Pollstar.
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The 2014 song Thinking Out Loud, which peaked at No. 1 in the UK and spent 51 weeks on the Billboard Hot 100, is being sued by Sheeran in further cases.
As another section of Townsend’s estate prepares to go to trial, SAS has filed a second case, which is now on hold.
SAS was happy with the decision, according to an attorney for the corporation named Hillel Parness.
Sheeran and his co-writers John McDaid and Steven McCutcheon were accused of plagiarizing the hook of their song Oh Why, a 2015 song by Sami Chokri and Ross O’Donoghue, at the Shape of You trial in London in March.
After a high court judge ruled in Sheeran’s favour, the singer said he hoped it would put an end to “future baseless claims”, which he said were “damaging to the songwriting industry”.
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