LOS ANGELES — Singers Robin Thicke and Pharrell Williams lied about how they crafted the 2013 hit "Blurred Lines" and should be financially punished for using music by Marvin Gaye, a lawyer for the late singer's family told a jury Thursday.
An attorney for Williams and Thicke, however, said his clients did nothing wrong in evoking the feeling of Gaye's music, and determining they improperly copied his work would have a chilling effect on musicians and other artists.
The dueling portrayals of deceit and creative expression emerged during closing arguments in the copyright infringement case filed by Gaye's children against the contemporary hit-makers.
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Lawyer Richard Busch, who represents Gaye's children, accused Williams and Thicke of repeatedly changing their stories about how they created "Blurred Lines." He urged the jury to find that the song infringed on the copyright for his 1977 hit "Got to Give It Up." Busch told the eight-person panel that they could award millions of dollars to the heirs of the deceased singer.
"When you do something wrong and you lie about it, there are consequences," Busch said during his closing argument.
Howard King, lead attorney for Williams, Thicke and rapper T.I., told jurors a verdict for the Gaye family would stifle artists and inhibit musicians trying to recreate an era or genre of music. Williams has said that was his intent with "Blurred Lines."
"Blurred Lines" was the biggest hit of 2013 and was nominated for a Grammy Award. T.I.'s rap track was added after it was recorded in mid-2012. He did not testify at the trial that started Feb. 24.
The jury began deliberations on Thursday and will resume Friday.
— The Associated Press