Blurred Lines trial: Pharrell Williams claims Miley Cyrus influenced song, not Marvin Gaye

The producer testified in a Los Angeles court after denying charges against him

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The Independent Culture

Pharrell Williams has taken to the stand in the “Blurred Lines” trial to testify that it was Miley Cyrus, not Marvin Gaye, who inspired his chart-topping 2013 hit.

The US singer and producer insisted that he was “channelling that late Seventies feeling” rather than consciously copying Gaye’s “Got To Give It Up” when he co-wrote the track with Robin Thicke.

Williams, Thicke and rapper TI are being sued by Gaye’s children, who claim that the similarities between “Blurred Lines” and their father’s song infringe copyright.

“Sometimes when you look back on your past work, you see echoes of people,” Williams said in a Los Angeles court yesterday. “But that doesn’t mean that’s what you were doing.

“The last thing you want to do as a creator is take something of someone else’s when you love him. I respect [Gaye’s] music beyond words.”

The “Happy” star admitted that the two compositions “sounded like the same thing” when stripped to their basic structures, but argued that some notes had been shifted in pitch to make them sound more alike.


He continued to explain how he was influenced by “a bunch of country-sounding music” he was recording with Cyrus in June 2012.

“It was like blending this country sound with this up-tempo groove,” he said. “Once you have a groove, then you’re pretty much allowing the groove to tell you what’s next.”

Last week, Thicke performed a medley of songs from the likes of US and Bob Marley in a bid to prove that many tracks sound similar without being copies.

“Blurred Lines” has made more than £10.8 million worldwide, with both Williams and Thicke taking home more than £3 million in profits.

Gaye’s family are seeking estimated damages of £26 million, as well as money from touring and sales.

The trial continues.