Ed Sheeran picked up his guitar and sang a snippet of his song “Thinking Out Loud” as he testified in his $100 million copyright infringement trial on Thursday.
The heirs of Ed Townsend, who wrote “Let’s Get It On” with Marvin Gaye, are suing the British singer for allegedly copying parts of the 1973 song while writing his 2014 ballad “Thinking Out Loud.”
On Thursday, Sheeran returned to the witness stand in Manhattan Federal Court and demonstrated the four-chord sequence at the heart of his song on his acoustic guitar.
He performed part of what he insisted was the first version of “Thinking Out Loud,” revealing that the key lyric he and Amy Wadge originally wrote was “I’m singing out now” instead of “thinking out loud.”
He also sang the song’s opening line, “When your legs don’t work like they used to before.”
During his testimony, which lasted almost an hour, the 32-year-old explained that he and Wadge wrote the song during a two-day writing session at his home in England. He recalled stepping out of the shower and hearing Wadge strumming the chords and thinking, “We need to do something with that.”
He revealed that writing the song took little time, and they completed it within a day, with the lyrics inspired by the longtime love between his grandparents.
The singer will return to the stand for cross-examination when the trial resumes on Monday.