Ed Sheeran being sued for plagiarism in 'Photograph'

The chorus of the British singer's chart-topping hit shares the exact tune of Matt Cardle's 'Amazing'

By Andrea Tim | Published: 9 Jun 2016

Video: Éire Creative

You know that Ed Sheeran song that brings tears to your eyes? That song you picture yourself dancing with your significant other, if you haven't already? That song, which currently has 208.5 million YouTube views on its music video since its upload one year ago? That song, Photograph, allegedly copies Matt Cardle's song Amazing.

We say allegedly, but anyone can listen to the chorus of both songs and tell that they're the same, note for note. Just listen to the comparison video Sydney editing studio Éire Creative made. Feel slightly betrayed? So do we.

The lyrics are different, but for Martin Harrington and Thomas Leonard, the songwriters behind Amazing, the similarity is unacceptable and they are suing Ed for $20 million. Matt, who won The X Factor in 2010, is not part of the lawsuit, while Ed and his representatives have not yet made comments.

"The chorus sections of Amazing and the infringing Photograph share 39 identical notes – meaning the notes are identical in pitch, rhythmic duration, and placement in the measure," the lawsuit reads. "The songs' similarities reach the very essence of the work. The similarities go beyond substantial, which is itself sufficient to establish copyright infringement, and are in fact striking. The similarity of words, vocal style, vocal melody, melody, and rhythm are clear indicators, among other things, that Photograph copies Amazing."

There could be one in a million billion trillion chances that this was all a coincidence, but there's a far bigger possibility that Photograph, now used in the soundtrack for Me Before You, is really the product of blatant plagiarism. Excuse us while we go sulk in the corner and listen to Thinking Out Loud instead.

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