Ed Sheeran’s 2017 single, “Shape of You,” skyrocketed to the top of the charts and won a plethora of awards, including a Grammy. After an 11-day hearing, Ed Sheeran won a copyright lawsuit involving plagiarism of “Shape of You” from a 2015 song, “Oh Why.”
Claims of Copyright Infringement
After its release, the track became an instant hit – it played over the air for weeks and even years afterwards. All this success, however, nearly came to a halt when Sheeran was accused of plagiarizing someone else’s song. Sami Chokri – whose stage name is Sami Switch – and co-writer Ross O’Donoghue claimed “copyright infringement, damages and an account of profits in relation to the alleged infringement” in 2018.
Ed Sheeran’s Similarities
Chokri and O’Donoghue allege parts of “Shape of You” draw from their 2015 track, “Oh Why.” In their complaint, they specify that Sheeran’s chorus is a rip-off of their song’s hook. The lyrics in question: Ed sings “Oh I, Oh I, Oh I”, while Chokri sings “Oh why, oh why, why.” The lawsuit contends that Ed Sheeran’s chorus is “strikingly similar” to that of “Oh Why,” and that the Grammy-winning artist somehow derived “Shape of You” from the latter song.
At the end of the trial, High Court Judge Zacaroli says Ed Sheeran “neither deliberately nor subconsciously copied” the work. He says that though the song share similarities, the chorus “originated from sources other than ‘Oh Why.'” In an Instagram video, Ed finally speaks of the trial. He says claims like that of Chokri and O’Donoghue are “really damaging to the songwriting industry… there’s only so many notes and very few chords used in pop music.”
More from Ed Sheeran
Though Ed Sheeran’s legal battles are tedious and time-consuming, the singer is still releasing music. In April, he teamed with Lil Baby for “2step” and J Balvin for an EP. Fans are expectant to hear new music from the British star soon, and so are we!