Ed Sheeran has reached a deal to end a £20million lawsuit over his hit ballad Photograph. The British singer was accused of "note-for-note" copying a track called Amazing, which was released by X Factor winner Matt Cardle in 2012. Songwriters Thomas Leonard and Martin Harrington sued Ed accusing him of "unabashedly taking credit" for their work. The pair stated that Ed and his writing partner, Snow Patrol's Johnny McDaid, had "copied and exploited, without authorisation or credit, the work of other active, professional songwriters on a breathtaking scale".
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Ed Sheeran has settled a £20million lawsuit over his song Photograph
Details of the settlement have not been revealed. An order signed by Judge James Selna at a court in California on Monday said the case had been dismissed after an agreement was reached between the parties. Thomas and Martin lodged their complaint in the US in July, stating: "This copying is, in many instances, verbatim, note-for-note copying, makes up nearly one half of Photograph, and raises this case to the unusual level of strikingly similar copying." The two men were represented by Richard Busch, the lawyer who helped the family of Marvin Gaye win a copyright infringement case against Robin Thicke and Pharrell Williams in 2015.
Matt Cardle released Amazing in 2012
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Ed's single Photograph from his album X (Multiply) reached number 10 in the US Billboard Hot 100, and number 15 in the UK singles chart in 2015. Its music video has been viewed on YouTube more than 300 million times. Matt's song Amazing, meanwhile, peaked at number 84 in the UK in 2012.