Ed Sheeran sings Nina Simone during Shape of You copyright case
The star is accused of lifting his song’s “Oh I, oh I, oh I” hook from Sami Chokri’s 2015 single Oh Why.
In court, he sang elements of Nina Simone’s Feeling Good and Blackstreet’s No Diggity to illustrate how the melody is commonplace in pop music.
“If you put them all in the same key, they’ll sound the same,” he explained.
Sheeran denies having heard Mr Chokri’s song and rejected the suggestion that friends might have played it to him before he wrote Shape of You in October 2016.
His upbeat pop track became 2017’s best-selling single and remains the most-played song of all time on Spotify.
But Sheeran’s royalties – estimated to be about £20m – have been frozen since Mr Chokri and his co-writer Ross O’Donoghue claimed copyright infringement in 2018.
Court hears voice memos
Lawyers for the pair played the court excerpts from the Shape of You recording sessions as they built their case.
In one recording, Sheeran could be heard saying he needed to change the “oh I” melody because it was “a bit close to the bone”.
“We thought it was a bit too close to a song called No Diggity by Blackstreet,” the star told the court. “I said that… we should change it.”
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