Sheeran, who appeared at the High Court for the start of a three-week legal battle over the writing of his hit single ‘Shape of You’, has claimed to have written 25 tunes The National’s Aaron Dessner, which were written in the space of a week.
Amid a legal battle, Sheeran has been taken to court by two musicians who feel that his 2017 hit borrows from their single ‘Oh Why’, which was released in 2015. Sam Chokri released ‘Oh Why’ in 2015, and co-wrote the song with Ross O’Donoghue, who have both claimed that Sheeran borrowed “phrases” from the single. Sheeran has denied these claims, feeling that the work that shaped ‘Shape of You’ are his alone.
During the trial, BBC News reporter Mark Savage claimed that Sheeran made the assertion that he wrote a number of tunes with The National‘s Dessner. No further information is available at the time of print. Dessner, dipping his toe into the world of pop music, also recently helped to co-produce Taylor Swift albums Folklore and Evermore.
What we can confirm is that Sheeran was described as a “magpie” during the proceedings. Andrew Sutcliffe QC, for Chokri and O’Donoghue, said that the writer is known for stealing from other artists. “Mr Sheeran is undoubtedly very talented, he is a genius. But he is also a magpie. He borrows ideas and throws them into his songs, sometimes he will acknowledge it but sometimes he won’t” adding that it “depends on who you are and whether he thinks he can get away with it”.
Sheeran and his legal team have all vehemently denied the influence of ‘Oh Why’ on the finished product, stating that Sheeran had never heard of the song before writing ‘Shape of You’.
In other Sheeran related news, the songwriter released his fifth album = (“equals”) in 2021. Elton John guested on ‘Merry Christmas’, which debuted on the number one spot, having eclipsed Adele’s ‘Easy On Me’. The song was also notable for its charitable endeavours. All proceeds from the single went to Ed Sheeran Suffolk Music Foundation and the Elton John AIDS Foundation.