The copyright case against Ed Sheeran‘s “Thinking Out Loud” is heating up, with both sides battling over a YouTube clip.
Ed is being sued for allegedly stealing elements of Marvin Gaye‘s “Let’s Get It On” to make his 2014 hit.
Billboard reports the case was brought on by the heirs of singer Ed Townsend, who co-wrote “Let’s Get It On” with Gaye. The YouTube clip in question sees Ed playing the two songs simultaneously during a 2014 concert in Switzerland.
Ed’s team is trying to bar the video from being played during the trial because they say it will confuse the jurors. Meanwhile, his accusers state the clip is “among the most important and critical evidence in this case” and, to them, proves he stole the song.
Ed’s team says the video showing him toggling between two songs requires more nuance to understand. They claim the clip demonstrates how the songs share a chord progression, which they say is “freely available to all songwriters.”
They also noted the same elements were found in a song that predates “Let’s Get It On” — The Temptations‘ 1965 hit “Since I Lost My Baby.”
Attorney Patrick Frank, who represents Townsend’s heirs, disagrees with the argument, saying, “The video of the medley at issue provides helpful guidance to highlight and/or illustrate those similarities and why they are significant.”
“The medley which defendants belatedly seek to exclude from admission at trial … is among the most important and critical evidence in the case,” he added.
Townsend’s heirs filed suit in 2017. Gaye’s heirs are not part of this case.
No date has been set for a trial, but it is expected to take place in a Manhattan federal courthouse.
Copyright © 2023, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.