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News July 7, 2019

Ed Sheeran copyright case postponed until ‘Stairway To Heaven’ ruling

Ed Sheeran copyright case postponed until ‘Stairway To Heaven’ ruling

Jurors in a copyright trial revolving around an Ed Sheeran song have been advised to take some time off, with things postponed until a decision is reached in a similar Led Zeppelin case.

If you’ve been following Ed Sheeran’s recent copyright battles, then you’d likely know that the chart-topping musician has been wrapped up in a few fights over the composition of his 2014 track ‘Thinking Out Loud’.

Back in 2016, the estate of Ed Townsend launched legal action to claim that portions of Sheeran’s song were “substantially and/or strikingly similar” to Marvin Gaye’s ‘Let’s Get It On’, which Townsend had written years before.

While this case was later dismissed, a judge ruled in January of this year that the case does need to go to court, noting that “although the two compositions are not identical, an average lay observer could conclude that parts of TOL were appropriated from LGO.”

Now, it appears as though Ed Sheeran has been granted a reprieve for the time being, with jurors ordered to take some time off while a similar case is decided.

Check out ‘Let’s Get It On’ by Marvin Gaye:

As Rolling Stone reports (via Law360), judge Louis Staton ordered that the two parties should “take the summer off!”, noting that they will reconvene once a decision has been handed down in a case against Led Zeppelin’s ‘Stairway To Heaven’.

As has been reported before, the case surrounding ‘Stairway To Heaven’ revolves around claims that the 1971 rock classic infringes upon the copyright of Los Angeles group Spirit, whose 1968 track ‘Taurus’ bears a resemblance to the legendary tune.

While legal action first began in 2014, a ruling in June has seen the case ordered to go before a panel of judges in September.

However, given the prolonged nature of the ‘Stairway To Heaven’ copyright case, Rolling Stone notes that if it ends up going to the US Supreme Court, we might be waiting until 2020 for a resolution in the Ed Sheeran case.

Although Ed Sheeran has faced a few copyright claims over the years, he is also facing another infringement accusation in regards to ‘Thinking Out Loud’, with Structured Asset Sales – one-third owners of the copyright to ‘Let’s Get It On’ – launching a $100 million copyright case against the song back in 2018.

Check out ‘Thinking Out Loud’ by Ed Sheeran:

This article originally appeared on The Industry Observer, which is now part of The Music Network.

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