The copyright infringement trial of Ed Sheeran, the Grammy-winning English singer, is underway in the United States.


According to Daily Mail UK, the British singer is being sued by the heirs of Ed Townsend, co-writer of ‘Let’s Get It On’, a 1973 song by the late Marvin Gaye.

The lawsuit, which was initially filed in 2017, alleged “striking similarities” and “overt common elements” between Sheeran’s ‘Thinking Out Loud’ and the 1973 soul classic.

The 32-year-old British pop star is expected to testify at the Manhattan federal courtroom on Monday.


The trial period, which is expected to last a week, will be presided over by Louis Stanton, a 95-year-old judge.

‘Thinking Out Loud’, written by Sheeran and Amy Wadge, the English songwriter, was released in 2014 and won a Grammy for song of the year.

On the other hand, Marvin Gaye’s ‘Let’s Get It On’ reached number 1 on the Billboard Pop Singles in September 1973.


Listen to Gaye’s ‘Let’s Get It On’ below:

It is understood that the lyrics and vibes of both songs are “legally insignificant.”

The court will only consider the raw elements of melody, harmony, and rhythm that make up the composition of the 1973 song, as documented on sheet music filed with the United States Patent and Trademark Office.


In a court filing, Sheeran’s attorneys argued that “the two songs share versions of a similar and unprotectable chord progression that was freely available to all songwriters.”

Listen to Sheeran’s ‘Thinking Out Loud’ below:

Atlantic Records, Sheeran’s label, and Sony/ATV Music Publishing are named as defendants in the lawsuit. However, Wadge, Sheeran’s co-writer, was not named.


Ed Townsend, who was a singer, songwriter, and lawyer, died in 2003 while Marvin Gaye, a Motown superstar, was shot by his father in 1984 at the age of 44.

Kathryn Townsend-Griffin, his daughter, is the plaintiff leading the lawsuit against Sheeran.

“This must stop,” said Griffin-Townsend in March.

“We have enough chaos going on in the world today, besides having to stand here and worry about other people stealing other people’s belongings.”


This will not be the first time the megastar has found himself in this kind of legal battle.

In March 2022, Sheeran won another copyright suit over the song, ‘Shape of You.’

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