Song Name ‘Shape of You’ Inspired by Derry, Snow Patrol’s Johnny McDaid Says During Ed Sheeran Copyright Court Hearing


The title of Ed Sheeran’s hit song Shape of You was inspired by a popular phrase used in Derry, singer-songwriter Johnny McDaid has said, dismissing any suggestion the song was plagiarized.

Sheeran, Mr McDaid and producer Steven McCutcheon were involved in a legal case over the copyright of the 2017 song.

Musicians Sami Chokri and Ross O’Donoghue, alleging that Shape of You was inspired by their own song, titled Oh Why – those allegations have been denied.

Giving evidence at a Supreme Court hearing on Wednesday, Mr McDaid described the idea of ​​copying someone else’s work as “disgusting”.

In his written evidence, he recalls creating Shape Of You at Mr McCutcheon’s studio – known as Steve Mac – in October 2016 as a “crazy” process with all three co-workers. The author proposes ideas for the melody and lyrics.

Mr McDaid, godfather of Mr Sheeran’s daughter, said: “The words ‘baby shape’ come from me.”

He added: “It’s a phrase that’s used in Derry, where I come from. I’m sensitive to objectification and I’m not interested in ‘love your body’, so I suggest ‘picture your body,'” he added. your form’ is more abstract, although both appear in the song in complete form.”

According to Mr McDaid, the song was completed in a few hours with Mr Sheeran, who he describes as “the fastest and most prolific songwriting songwriter I’ve ever worked with”.

Band member Snow Patrol said he “wholeheartedly” disagreed with the apparent implication that he was “a person who regularly infringes on the copyrights of others” in a written witness statement to a collective court hearing. focused on creating the 2017 hit Shape Of You.

The court was previously told that the original reference to the song TLC No Scrubs in Shape Of You was changed during the creation of the use, we still had to give the rights holders in the end No Scrubs a percentage of Shape Of You”.

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In his written statement, Mr McDaid said he was “not aware of the specifics of the change or clearance”.

Previously, the court also heard that Mr. Sheeran and Mr. McDaid settled a copyright claim in the United States in 2017 against their song Photograph for more than five million dollars.

They allegedly copied a song called Amazing, co-written by Tom Leonard and Martin Harrington, which was released in 2012 by former X Factor winner Matt Cardle.

Mr McDaid said in his written evidence that Mr Chokri and Mr O’Donoghue are attempting to allege that the TLC and Photograph lawsuit “shows that I have a habit of consciously or consciously appropriating skill and hard work of other songwriters of my time composing and recording sessions”.

He continued: “This seems to imply that I did so without asking permission and therefore I am someone who frequently infringes the copyrights of others.

“I completely disagree with this implication. It is simply not true and I feel it is a very serious thing to suggest about me and the way I work.”

Mr. McDaid added: “I don’t need or want, nor will I ever, plagiarize other people’s work. The idea is disgusting to me.”

In court on Wednesday, during questioning by Mr Chokri and Mr O’Donoghue’s lawyer Andrew Sutcliffe QC, Mr McDaid insisted he paid only a “proportion” of the $5.4 million paid out in settlement – the amount he claimed was the first to be heard. about “this week”.

He said the settlement was reached after legal advice, noting that at the time the “culture” was put before US grand jury trials, which “really didn’t benefit anyone.” musicians at all.”

He noted in his written evidence that “we ultimately settled the case for commercial reasons,” which included “the cost and time involved in fighting the case, along with damages.” reputational damage already done by a PR campaign being carried out by another”.

“Things didn’t work out because we believed we copied Amazing in any way,” he said.

The court heard that in a February 2016 email from Mr McDaid to his manager referring to Amazing’s claim, he said he “hadn’t heard but they have a case”, then write “ouch”.

In court, Mr McDaid, who did not believe Amazing had been copied, said he had used the phrase “very loosely and not in a legal sense” and that “ouch” was “a colloquial vernacular that means” I do not like this “”.

Mr Chokri, a grumpy performer who performs under the names Sami Switch and Mr O’Donoghue, asserts that the central verse of “Oh I” in Shape Of You is “very similar” to the chorus of “Oh Why” in their own creations.

Mr McDaid said in his written evidence that he did not recall ever hearing Oh Why “in any way” nor was he aware of the Sami Switch prior to the legal dispute.

He said he didn’t create the phrase “Oh I” in Shape of You and can’t remember when it was created.

After the Oh Why and Shape Of You clips were played on YouTube in court, Mr McDaid said they were “staggeringly different”, adding: “I think there are aspects of them that are similar. .”

The court heard that Mr McDaid and Mr Sheeran were “very close”, had similar tattoos and wrote “hundreds” of songs together.

Legal proceedings were initiated by Mr Sheeran and his co-authors in May 2018, with them asking the Supreme Court to declare that they did not infringe Mr Chokri and Mr O’Donoghue’s copyrights. .

In July 2018, Mr Chokri and Mr O’Donoghue made their own claims for “copyright infringement, damage and profit accounts related to the alleged infringement”.

Justice Zacaroli’s trial continues. Song Name ‘Shape of You’ Inspired by Derry, Snow Patrol’s Johnny McDaid Says During Ed Sheeran Copyright Court Hearing

Fry Electronics Team

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