Ed Sheeran has another lawsuit on his neck: parts of his song “Thinking Out Loud” are said to have been copied by Marvin Gaye.
Musician Ed Sheeran (32) is currently dealing with a lawsuit in New York: He is accused of copying parts of his hit ballad “Thinking Out Loud” from Marvin Gayes’ song “Let’s Get It On” from 1973.
The heirs of Gayes’ co-author Ed Townsend had sued. According to US media reports, the two songs have “melodic, harmonic and rhythmic compositions” that are “strikingly similar”.
There was also a dispute about “Shape Of You” and “Photograph”.
It’s not the first time for Sheeran that he’s been accused of copyright theft: in 2022 there were allegations that his song “Shape Of You” was copied. At the time, a court dismissed the lawsuit. In 2016, there were similar allegations about his hit song “Photograph,” which were said to have been settled out of court.
After the last legal dispute, Sheeran went public with an Instagram post and warned of “damage to the music industry”: “Every day 60,000 songs are released on Spotify. That’s 22 million songs a year. And there are only twelve Notes and very few chords used in pop music. Coincidences are inevitable.”
In fact, the descendants of Marvin Gaye (1939-1984) had already sued other artists for copyright infringement – and won: in 2015 they demanded $ 7.4 million from musician Robin Thicke (46) and producer Pharrell Williams (50) because they hit “Blurred Lines” from Gayes’ song “Got To Give It Up”. A court awarded them $5.3 million after years of litigation.
Taylor Swift wins
Taylor Swift (33) and the cult band Led Zeppelin have also had trouble with allegations of plagiarism in recent years: Swift was sued because she is said to have copied her hit “Shake It Off”, Led Zeppelin is said to have parts of “Stairway To Heaven” have stolen. In both cases, the lawsuits were dismissed.
I am an author and journalist who has worked in the entertainment industry for over a decade. I currently work as a news editor at a major news website, and my focus is on covering the latest trends in entertainment. I also write occasional pieces for other outlets, and have authored two books about the entertainment industry.