Singer Ed Sheeran is being hit hard in his pockets as it’s being reported that the 27-year-old has been hit with a massive lawsuit. According to a report by TMZ, Sheeran is on the receiving end of a monstrous $100 million lawsuit by a company claiming the singer ripped off a Marvin Gaye classic.
According to the lawsuit, a company called Structured Asset Sales filed the lawsuit, claiming Sheeran’s 2016 song, “Thinking Out Loud,” is a carbon copy of Gaye’s classic hit “Let’s Get it On.”
The suit goes on to allege that Sheeran’s song has the same melody, rhythms, harmonies, drums, bassline, backing chorus, tempo, syncopation, and looping as “Let’s Get it On.” The suit goes into great detail, including musical notation and more, laying out similarities between the two songs. Gaye’s song was written by a man named Edward Townsend and Gaye in 1973. Townsend died in 2003, and Structured Asset Sales bought one-third of the copyright and is now claiming that one-third of the song is worth $100 million.
The last major lawsuit involving a Gaye song was between the family’s estate and Robin Thicke, Pharrell Williams, and others, with a suit over their chart-topping hit “Blurred Lines.” The family eventually won that suit, which resulted in $5.3 million in damages being awarded to the family.
When it was released, Sheeran’s song proved to be a huge hit and was nominated for a Grammy for Best Record, Best Performance, and Song of the Year in 2016. According to the TMZ, documents show that Sheeran’s single and the album it appears on, X, has sold more than 15 million copies and been played on YouTube more than a billion times.
This isn’t the first lawsuit for Sheeran in relation to Gaye’s song. Sheeran has reportedly already been sued by Townsend’s heirs as well. In regards to that suit, Sheeran’s legal team are fighting it. There’s been no response from Sheeran’s team since the new lawsuit against him has been leaked. There also has been no word if the Gaye family might also sue.
As it was reported by Variety, the singer/songwriter is no stranger to lawsuits involving copyright infringement and was forced to pay up following a $20 million suit over his song “Photograph,” which was settled out of court, and another over “The Rest of Our Life,” which he composed for Tim McGraw and Faith Hill. Sheeran has asked to have that suit dismissed.