After their huge US$7.4 million win against Robin Thicke and Pharrell Williams for copyright infringement over the hit single “Blurred Lines,” Marvin Gaye’s extended musical family are in court again.
This time they have British musician Ed Sheeran in their sights, alleging Sheeran copied core elements of Marvin Gaye’s 1973 hit ‘Let’s Get It On” in his successful song “Thinking Out Loud”.
The lawsuit, filed in the federal court in the Southern District of New York last week, claims “The melodic, harmonic, and rhythmic compositions of ‘Thinking’ are substantially and/or strikingly similar to the drum composition of ‘Let’s.'” The suit was in fact filed by the family of Marvin Gaye’s co-writer Ed Townsend, and seeks a jury trial and compensation for damages.
It may not assist Sheeran’s case that he has previously mashed up both songs at concerts, as can be seen in the linked video taken in Zürich – suggesting he too recognises certain similarities in the works: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RxZjVZKVN7k
Representatives for defendants Sheeran, Sony/ATV Music Publishing, and Atlantic Records did not immediately respond to requests for comment, but they may have been kept busy lately given this lawsuit comes just two months after certain California-based musicians sued Sheeran for $US20 million over his hit song “Photograph” in an unrelated case.
We will keep you posted.
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