British singer-songwriter Ed Sheeran has publicly declared that he will leave the music industry if he loses his ongoing copyright infringement lawsuit. Sheeran’s potential departure from the music scene depends on the outcome of the case in which he is accused of plagiarizing a classic song by Marvin Gaye.
In 2016, pop star Ed Sheeran was sued by Ed Townsend, one of the co-writers of Marvin Gaye’s iconic track “Let’s Get It On.” Townsend accused Sheeran of copying the song in his hit single “Thinking Out Loud.” The allegations claim that Sheeran and co-writer Amy Wadge borrowed the 1973 song’s rhythm, as well as an ascending four-chord sequence. The plaintiff points to “striking similarities” between the two tracks that constitute copyright infringement. Sheeran, however, denies the allegations that he copied Gaye’s song.
During a court hearing in Manhattan on May 1, Sheeran reportedly took the stand to insist that he would “be done” with music if found guilty, according to MailOnline. “If that happens, it’s over, I’ll stop,” the artist stated. “I find it really insulting to have dedicated my whole life to being a performer and songwriter and have someone reduce it,” he added.
Sheeran’s attorney, Irene Farkas, argued in court that the “heartfelt song” was written “without copying” Gaye and features elements commonly used in pop music. However, attorney Ben Crump countered, claiming that Sheeran “admitted” to copying Gaye when he mixed the two songs during a live performance.
As the trial continues, fans of the British singer-songwriter are anxiously awaiting the outcome, which could potentially mark the end of Ed Sheeran’s music career if the verdict goes against him.