Award-winning singer/songwriter Ed Sheeran is facing a lawsuit from a Californian songwriting duo, Martin Harrington and Thomas Leonard, along with their publishing company HaloSongs claiming “Photograph” was copied from them.
The 25-year-old singer is being sued for $20 million in damages by the duo, who believe the hit song borrowed heavily from their original ‘Amazing’.
In the suit filed against Sheeran, they also named ‘Photograph’ co-writer Johnny McDaid, record label Warner Music Group and publishers Sony/ATV Songs and Polar Patrol Music co-defendant.
The lawyer representing them is the same lawyer who was victorious last year in representing the family of Marvin Gaye in a copyright infringement lawsuit against artists Robin Thicke and Pharrell Williams. They were accused of making their 2013 hit “Blurred Lines” too similar to Gaye’s 1977 song “Got to Give It Up.” A jury awarded the family $7.4 million, which was eventually cut down to $5.3 million by a judge.
‘Photograph’, which was released in 2015, allegedly contains 39 notes that are “identical in pitch, rhythmic duration, and placement in the measure” to their 2012 composition performed by 2010 X Factor UK Winner, Matt Cardle according to NBC.
Ed and his label have yet to comment on the lawsuit.
Listen to a comparison of the two songs here:
Photo Credit: Getty Images/Anthony Harvey