Monday, June 17, 2024

Pop Copy Cat: Ed Sheeran Settles Copyright Claim on Hit Song “Photograph” After Conceding Claim Another Song


Ed Sheeran is starting to get a reputation.

He’s reportedly settled a copyright claim on his hit record, “Photograph.” A pair of songwriters named Martin Harrington and Tom Leonard sued, saying “Photograph” sounded like their song “Amazing.” Sheeran didn’t wait to find out how a judge or jury would feel about it. Presumably money has changed hands.

Sheeran is not new to this game. A couple of weeks ago, I wrote that Sheeran had to give credit and copyright to the authors of the TLC hit “No Scrubs.” Sheeran’s current smash, “Shape of You,” sounds just like it. Sing along.

There is also a pending lawsuit over his hit “Thinking of You.” I always said that song sounded like Marvin Gaye’s “Let’s Get it On.” Eventually the Gaye estate caught up to it.

Sheeran plays acoustic guitar, is from Yorkshire, England, and comes off like a cross between Van Morrison and Elton John. Only those two never had these problems. They wrote original music. Sheeran says he took a year off to write his new album, “Divide,” but maybe he was listening to the radio a lot. In any case, he wants to be taken seriously. This is not the legacy he wants.

Roger Friedman
Roger Friedman
Roger Friedman began his Showbiz411 column in April 2009 after 10 years with Fox News, where he created the Fox411 column. His movie reviews are carried by Rotten Tomatoes, and he is a member of both the movie and TV branches of the Critics Choice Awards. His articles have appeared in dozens of publications over the years including New York Magazine, where he wrote the Intelligencer column in the mid 90s and covered the OJ Simpson trial, and Fox News (when it wasn't so crazy) where he covered Michael Jackson. He is also the writer and co-producer of "Only the Strong Survive," a selection of the Cannes, Sundance, and Telluride Film festivals, directed by DA Pennebaker and Chris Hegedus.

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