Ed Sheeran surprised fans with an impromptu performance in New York after Marvin Gaye won the copyright lawsuit.
The Grammy-winning artist stopped by a pop-up store in Soho for her latest album, released Friday, where she was greeted by hundreds of fans.
Sheeran then pulled out his guitar, hopped onto a nearby car, and serenaded the crowd with some of his biggest hits – including “Thinking Out Loud,” which was at the center of his latest legal drama.
Many fans posted videos of the mini-concert on social media, showing Sheeran smiling as he silenced the crowd before singing more than six songs.
The celebration song comes just a day after a jury decided that the “Perfect” singer was not responsible for copying Marvin Gaye’s “Let’s Get It On” after just three hours of debate.
The decision comes nearly four years after one of Gaye’s collaborators, the late Ed Townsend, claimed the estate had “copied and used” Sheeran’s 1973 hit R&B song “without permission or citation”.
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They argued that the singer copied “the melody, rhythms, harmonies, drums, bass sequence, backing chorus, tempo, syncopation and loop” of the song and asked for $100 million for it.
However, Sheeran denied his claims, arguing that the chord sequence 1-3-4-5 is common in pop songs.
After learning of her fate, the 32-year-old shared a powerful message to her accusers, explaining that she had to miss her deceased grandmother’s funeral to resolve the conflict.
“We’ve spent the last eight years talking about two songs that have significantly different lyrics, melodies and four chords, yet are different, and are used every day by songwriters all over the world,” he said. “They’re in a songwriter’s alphabet, in our toolkit, and should be there for all of us to use. Nobody has them or the way they are played the same way, nobody has the color blue.”
He continued, “I’m just a guy with a guitar who likes to write music for people’s enjoyment. I will never and never will allow myself to be a piggy bank that someone will shake. Being in New York for this hearing meant I missed being at my grandma’s funeral in Ireland with my family, and I’ll never be able to get that time back.
Sheeran concluded his message by thanking his family, co-writer Amy Wadge, and the jury for protecting “the creative freedom of songwriters.”
Prior to this lawsuit, Sheeran had been sued twice for allegedly copying another artist’s work. Both cases were resolved out of court.