The song was co-written by Ed Sheeran, who is also named in the copyright lawsuit. Carey and Golden are accusing the three artists of “blatant copying” their 2014 song When I Found You.
“The copying is, in many instances, verbatim, note-for-note copying of original elements of the Song, and is obvious to the ordinary observer,” states the complaint as published by The Hollywood Reporter.
And the two Australian singer-songwriters potentially have momentum behind them. Carey and Golden have record deals with major labels and music direction positions with Netflix, according to the complaint. When I Found You was released on ABC Records and was a hit in Australia.
Famed Nashville-based lawyer Richard Busch is defending the plaintiffs and has a serious track record. Busch previously took on Sheeran in a $20 million copyright lawsuit over the superstar’s song Photograph — ending in a settlement which earned the two suing songwriters music credits and a significant royalty share.
The lawyer also successfully won a trial for the family of Marvin Gaye in the Blurred Lines lawsuit.
The lawsuit also states When I Found You was released by recording artist Jasmine Rae, who is dating former marketing manager for Sony Music, Tim Holland: “It very well may have been an agent of Sony Music Entertainment who provided the other defendants herein with access to the Song.”
Carey and Golden confronted Holland about the similarities between the two songs. “During this conversation, Mr. Holland admitted to knowing about the Infringing Song months in advance of its release because he was tasked with promoting and marketing the Infringing Song and Infringing Sound Recording before its release,” states the complaint.
“When questioned by Plaintiffs as to his silence about the similarities between When I Found You and the Infringing Song/Infringing Sound Recording, Mr. Holland stated he did not want to lose his job with Sony Music.”
Continuing, “When pressed further by Plaintiffs, Mr. Holland indicated that he had known that the songs were substantially similar for more than two months prior to the Oct. 5, 2017 release date of the Infringing Song/Infringing Sound Recording.”
The Australian artists are seeking injunctive relief and at least $5 million in damages. They are also asking for profits, a running royalty and an award of attorney’s fees and costs.
Compare McGraw and Hill’s song above with Carey and Golden’s track below.