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Robin Thicke and Pharrell lose Blurred Lines lawsuit

NO BLURRED LINES: Robin Thicke and Pharrell Williams have been ordered to pay the family of Marvin Gaye $7.3m for copyright infringement

US SUPERSTARS Robin Thicke and Pharrell Williams have been ordered to pay the family of Marvin Gaye $7.3 million after a court ruled the pair had copied the R&B legend's Got to Give It Up to create 2013's biggest hit, Blurred Lines.

Marvin Gaye’s daughter Nona Gaye wept as the verdict was being read and was hugged by her attorney, Richard Busch.

“Right now, I feel free,” Nona Gaye said after the verdict. “Free from Pharrell Williams and Robin Thicke’s chains and what they tried to keep on us and the lies that were told.”

Though Thicke is credited as a writer of Blurred Lines, he told jurors he didn’t write the track and that Williams had solely crafted the hit in about an hour in mid-2012.

He testified he wasn’t present when the song was written, despite receiving credit.

Williams, whose single Happy has become the most downloaded track ever, told jurors that Gaye’s music was part of his childhood, but the seven-time Grammy winner said he didn’t use any of it to create Blurred Lines.

He also signed a document stating he didn’t use any other artists’ work in the music and would be responsible if a successful copyright claim was raised.


WIN: Marvin Gaye's family say they are now "free from Pharrell Williams and Robin Thicke’s chains and what they tried to keep on us and the lies that were told"

The Gayes’ lawyer branded Williams and Thicke liars who went beyond trying to emulate the sound of Gaye’s late-1970s music and copied Got to Give It Up outright.

Gaye’s children – Nona, Frankie and Marvin Gaye III – sued the singers in 2013 and were present when the verdict was read. Gaye died in April 1984, leaving his children the copyrights to his music.

Blurred Lines has sold more than 7.3m copies in the US alone, according to Nielsen SoundScan figures. It earned a Grammy nomination and netted Williams and Thicke millions of dollars.

An attorney for Thicke and Williams has said a decision in favor of Gaye’s heirs could have a chilling effect on musicians who try to emulate an era or another artist’s sound.

“While we respect the judicial process, we are extremely disappointed in the ruling made today, which sets a horrible precedent for music and creativity going forward,” a spokesperson for Pharrell told Rolling Stone.

“Pharrell created ‘Blurred Lines’ from his heart, mind and soul and the song was not taken from anyone or anywhere else. We are reviewing the decision, considering our options and you will hear more from us soon about this matter.”

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