Yorkshire-born Ed Sheeran taught himself guitar at a tender age and began writing songs at school in Suffolk, before moving to London at just 17 to start gigging around the capital's pubs and clubs. Of Irish descent, Sheeran grew up listening to artists like Van Morrison, and even attended a secret Damien Rice gig, in Ireland, when he was just 11, so perhaps his musical career was destiny. Sheeran made his first EP, The Orange Room, when he was 14, which led to two full albums, Ed Sheeran (2006) and Want Some? (2007), as well as an audition for the failed TV drama series, Britannia High.
After reading about James Morrison's stint of playing 200 gigs in one year, Sheeran made it his mission to beat him and, in 2009, managed 319, which created a loyal and passionate fanbase, especially around the London area, as well as garnering celebrity fans like Elton John and Rio Ferdinand. In 2009, Sheeran toured with Just Jack, and also released another EP, You Need Me, before one of his self-posted internet videos was seen by Example, who asked Sheeran to tour with him. The exposure gave Sheeran the confidence to take a risk and go to Los Angeles, where he played dozens of open mic nights, eventually being noticed by actor Jamie Foxx, at whose club Sheeran had performed some well-received gigs. Foxx invited Sheeran to write and record at his house, and the young singer-songwriter also utilised YouTube as a platform for his music. He released two more EPs, Ed Sheeran: Live At The Bedford (2010) and Songs I Wrote With Amy (2010) with musician, Amy Wadge. His 2011 EP, No.5 Collaborations Project, featured artists like Wiley, Devlin and Sway, and got him a record deal with Asylum/Atlantic Records and, in the April, a slot on Later...With Jools Holland, on which he performed “The A Team”, which was to become his first mainstream hit, reaching No.3 in the UK singles chart in July 2011. His debut studio album, +, was released in September 2011, after his second single, “You Need Me”. The third single, “Lego House” (featuring Rupert Grint in the music video), came out in November 2011.
Ed Sheeran is expected to release his second studio album in 2012, and will tour the UK and Europe, plus a few American dates, in the first half of the year, plus appearances at the Ibiza and Mallorca Rocks events.
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