What a scary time.
[Image via New York Times.]
If you haven't already bought the import yet, then buy Ed Sheeran's debut album, +, as soon as it is released in America next month! It is such a stunning body of work!
The British troubadour is one of our utmost favorite new musicians of the past few years!
So insanely talented!!!!
We were thrilled to get to sit down with and talk about the special presents he makes for his fans and hands out at each of his shows, forgetting his lyrics, why he collaborates with so many rappers, making it at such a young age, playing by his own rules, spending time in America, dating, shagging groupies, being alone on stage without a band, touring with Snow Patrol, how radio in the UK and the US are different and soooo much more!
Great great hang!
Read some highlights from our chat… after the jump!
And watch our interview with Ed Sheeran in full above!!!
Perez: Hey everybody it's Perez, joined by Ed Sheeran who made me this really cool Lego super hero. Well he's not really a super hero. This is Lex Luther?
Ed Sheeran: Lex Luther yeah.
Perez: Now you were talking about before we began filming that you make these before shows?
Ed Sheeran: Yeah, I usually, usually my before show is to, I'll take all the time, and then I'll give them to a fan or two usually.
Perez: Have you found out if these ended up on eBay yet? I would imagine –
Ed Sheeran: Not yet, not yet.
Perez: No, that's awesome.
Ed Sheeran: They've kind of ended up on fans mantelpieces.
Perez: I feel very lucky to have one. And of course you have a song called, "Lego House" and a video, which you were barely in. Which had Rupert Grint in it. So you're in America. You've been here a bit now. How long have you been here for on tour?
Ed Sheeran: Since March the 27th. It's been like the full tour. But I've been kind of here and back since the beginning of January.
Perez: And have you found that your fans here are any different or the same or what's, what are they like in the US as apposed to like in the UK?
Ed Sheeran: Very similar to the UK. The fan bases tend to be different in places like Germany, and Japan, and stuff like that. But I think when it's a largely an English speaking audience, it tends to be quite similar. So it's very similar to Australia as well.
Perez: And now you're going back to the UK, I don't remember the exact dates, but you have a big tour in the UK. That's in the fall I think.
Ed Sheeran: Yeah.
Perez: What are you doing in the summer? What are your summer plans? Are you sharing?
Ed Sheeran: Festivals.
Ed Sheeran: And then going in August is all of Australia, September is US, and then October, November is Europe, and then back in the US in December.
Perez: And I — while you're on the road are you writing? So for the next EP or album or whatever you're going to do?
Ed Sheeran: Yeah. I started 20 new songs for the next album. I've been writing quite a lot with the Snow Patrol boys as well.
Perez: Well that's awesome. Yeah, you've been on tour with them. Have you collaborated with them before?
Ed Sheeran: No. I'd, you know I knew them before so yeah, I was kind of friends with them, but I've written a song with them, so it's good.
Perez: Now one of the things I love about your story is that — how old are you now?
Ed Sheeran: Twenty-one.
Perez: Twenty-one. Still so young, still so young. But you've been releasing music, and you were doing it independently since you were 15 or 16. How old were you?
Ed Sheeran: The first CD I released was 14.
Perez: Fourteen. But then this is what I'm curious about, and we haven't spoken about this before. You were doing that for a while, and then there seemed to be a moment where it kind of hit critical mass in the UK. What was that moment or when did it shift from like you just kind of releasing it on your own to like all of a sudden a lot of people paying attention?
Ed Sheeran: It was kind of radio play. When I started getting radio play. I mean, I kind of the mass is more fan base, and good probably, probably the biggest fan before we had (inaudible) venue and were doing like 20, 21 or so shows around the country, which we sold out. But as soon as radio started playing it, it started –
Perez: And then they just played you — you see that's one of the reasons I love the UK though. Because if you're — well they started you, you were still unsigned or were you –
Ed Sheeran: Yeah.
Perez: Now one of the also awesome things about you is you don't need anything other than just your guitar on that stage. But sometimes, like when you've been in America, do you get lonely; do you wish you had a band with you?
Ed Sheeran: I do — I've always got my tour manager, and then somebody from the label, and my managers on tour now so yeah.
Perez: But when you're touring in the UK, do you bother to have a band with you?
Ed Sheeran: No.
Perez: No? It will just be you?
Ed Sheeran: Yeah, I've never — I've done three gigs with a band, and I did that last year, and it was fun, it was fun. But for me, I've been playing solo since I was 14, and I don't really know any different. So yeah –
Perez: Wow. On your main headlining show, how long of a set — I'm just curious because it's not that common for an artist to just do the entire show just by themselves. Like how long of a set will you do or do you do?
Ed Sheeran: I do two hours.
Perez: Two hours just by yourself?
Ed Sheeran: Yeah. But the thing is if you think about how much –
Perez: Which is awesome. I'm not saying it's bad; I'm just saying wow that's different.
Ed Sheeran: Well if you think about how much money people put into their bands, and if you take all that money that you were going to put on a tour — like we've done 25,000 tickets in London so that kind of scale tour, and you've got all that money that you were going to put in a band, into your productions, and your lights, and your videos, you can make the set more awe inspiring, a success.
Perez: That would be cool. Now your songs are also very wordy. In concert, do you often rarely or sometimes forget your own lyrics?
Ed Sheeran: The only time I forget my lyrics is if I'm watching someone in the front row sing them back to me, and if they mess it up. Because then I'll trip up because I'll be like, oh man I'll start kind of looking at them mouthing what they're doing. And if they trip up, then I'll trip up. So yeah, I've kind of stopped doing that.
Perez: Are you enjoying kind of being much more famous now? You get some groupie loving? Is that fun part of –
Ed Sheeran: [Watch above for the answer.]
Perez: I don't know, I think we covered a lot. Anything else you can think to talk about?
Ed Sheeran: Album comes out June 12th.
Perez: Oh album. In America, comes out June 12th. Well let's talk about the album. It's called "+"?
Ed Sheeran: Yeah.
Perez: Well what's the meaning — I mean, that's a boring question. But let's talk about it. What's the meaning behind "+"?
Ed Sheeran: I mean, my joke is kind of — most people start a series of albums that they always put the numbers, and I've got the figures. So yeah, so that's new answer. The old answer is a bit long, and it's just about positivity and stuff like that.
Perez: Is there going to be any different new music on the US release?
Ed Sheeran: No, I was considering that, but I think I made a full body of work that I was happy enough to release in my home country, so I should be happy enough to release it here. So yeah, I think the next new music that people hear will probably be, probably be early next year. But I'm going to push the album that everyone else bought out here as well.
Perez: Well good, I mean, I've had the album for a while. But I encourage you all; if you haven't bought it, buy it when it comes out. It is a great body of work, it's really more than just about one song; it's about all of these great songs here. So get it, and we'll see him in the fall when he comes back.
Ed Sheeran: Definitely, thank you.
Perez: Bye. Good to see you, good to see ya.