Entertainment & Arts

Ed Sheeran settles Photograph copyright infringement claim

Ed Sheeran Image copyright EPA
Image caption Photograph was the fifth single from Sheeran's 2014 album X

Ed Sheeran has settled a $20m (£13.8m) copyright infringement claim against him in the US, over his hit song Photograph.

Songwriters Thomas Leonard and Martin Harrington sued the singer last June, claiming his hit ballad had a similar structure to their song, Amazing.

A lawyer for the pair confirmed to the BBC the claim had now been settled.

Leonard and Harrington's track was released by former X Factor winner Matt Cardle in 2012.

Instantly recognisable

On Friday, court papers were lodged dismissing the case "with prejudice", stipulating that a California federal court would enforce the terms of an agreement.

Richard Busch, who represented Harrington and Leonard, would not comment on the settlement terms.

A spokeswoman for Sheeran's record company, Atlantic Records, told the BBC it did not comment on stories relating to copyright issues.

The songwriters originally claimed the chorus of the two songs shared 39 identical notes, with similarities "instantly recognisable to the ordinary observer".

They submitted the chord structures for both tracks in court documents.

Image copyright Court documents
Image copyright Court documents

Mr Busch is the same lawyer who won a case for the family of the late soul singer Marvin Gaye.

He successfully sued Robin Thicke and Pharrell Williams for copyright infringement last year over their single Blurred Lines, winning a $7.4m (£5.1m) settlement.


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