Ed Sheeran Testifies In Plagiarism Case: 'Most Pop Songs Can Fit Over Most Pop Songs'

27 April 2023 | 8:42 am | Mary Varvaris

“If I had done what you’re accusing me of doing, I’d be a quite an idiot to stand on a stage in front of 20,000 people and do that.”

(Source: Supplied)

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Ed Sheeran has been sued for plagiarism again, this time for allegedly ripping off Marvin Gaye’s Let’s Get It On on his hit ballad, Thinking Out Loud.

The mega pop star has been sued over his songs Shape Of You and Photograph, with the latter leading to a settlement that Sheeran regrets, as "the floodgates opened" to more plagiarism cases.

Taking to the stand in a New York court, the lawsuit that was originally filed in 2017 by Kathryn Townsend Griffin, the daughter of Gaye’s co-writer, Ed Townsend, saw the lawyers, plaintiff and defendant issue their opening statements. Townsend Griffin’s lawsuit alleges that Sheeran and his co-writer, Amy Wadge, allegedly ripped off an ascending chord rhythm, per The Guardian.

“Most pop songs can fit over most pop songs … You could go from Let it Be to No Woman, No Cry and switch back,” Sheeran said after TownsendGriffin’s lawyer, Ben Crump, claimed that Sheeran playing a medley of Thinking Out Loud and Let’s Get It On was a “confession” of guilt.

Sheeran’s lawyer, Ilene S Farkas, argued that Townsend and Gaye can’t own “these common musical elements … No one owns basic musical building blocks,” with Sheeran earlier telling the court, “If I had done what you’re accusing me of doing, I’d be a quite an idiot to stand on a stage in front of 20,000 people and do that.”

The case is expected to last another week.

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Next Wednesday, 3 May, a new documentary entitled Ed Sheeran: The Sum of It All is set to premiere on Disney+.

Emmy Award-winning producers Ben Turner and Ben Winston at Fulwell 73 Productions (Elton John Live: Farewell from Dodger Stadium, Adele: One Night Only, The GRAMMY Awards) will help tell a tale of Love, Loss, Focus and Balance in four unique episodes which take the viewer on a journey from the very start of his career. 

“I’ve always been very guarded in my personal and private life; the only documentary I’ve ever made has been one that focused on my songwriting,” Sheeran said. “Disney approached me to make a four-part documentary, and it felt like the right time to open the door and let people in. I hope people enjoy it.”

Two days later, the A Team singer will release his personal new album, - (Subtract), through Asylum/Atlantic Records. You can pre-order the record here.