Known by his fans as “Ginger Jesus”, Ed Sheeran is slowly rising to massive popularity. And after working with widely mainstream artists like One Direction and Taylor Swift, it’s time the young British artist garnered some of his own success, beginning with a Grammy Nomination and a highly successful debut album. Here are some facts that you may not know about Ed Sheeran.
1. His Grammy nominated song, “The A Team”, was written while he was volunteering at a homeless shelter.
“‘The A Team’ came from an experience I had when I did a gig at a homeless shelter,” says Sheeran of the song. “I was 18 at the time and kind of quite naïve. So, I was a bit taken aback by some of the stories that I heard. I got home that night and I just wrote a lot of the lyrics. I wanted to write it so it sounded kind of upbeat, so you wouldn’t really know what it’s about, because it’s quite a dark subject.”
2. He’s quite the tattoo connoisseur.
He uses his tattoos to mark touring success by getting one in each country that he visits. He’s also an amateur tattoo artist, tatting up One Direction’s Harry Styles and other random people.
3. He names each of his guitars.
He currently has 11 half-sized guitars (for his small hands) and each of them has a name. There’s Felix, Nigel, Cyril, Trev, James, James II, and Trevor, just to name a few. He’s even named his looping pedal Jeffrey.
4. He loves Legos
He’s written a song called “Lego House” and is known for building Lego sets before concerts and distributing them to a lucky fan afterwards.
5. He dropped out of school to pursue a career in music.
At the age of 16, he convinced his parents that his best career move would be to leave school and move to London. So, he did.
6. In 2009, Ed played 312 gigs.
7. He prefers smaller, more intimate concerts than sold-out arenas.
This could be because he prefers quieter audiences. He’s even known to sometimes shush his crowd during a performance.
8. If you haven’t already noticed, he’s close friends with One Direction.
He and Harry Styles are reported to refer to one another as “Ron” and “Harry”. Rupert Grint, who plays Ron Weasley in the Harry Potter films, once portrayed an Ed Sheeran look-a-like/obsessed fan in one of his music videos.
9. Ed Sheeran has a twin (well, a really convincing look-a-like)
After fans tweeted pictures of the look-a-like (many believing it was actually Ed), Ed Sheeran sought him out.
10. He’s a philanthropist
He raised £40,000 when he played a gig in Bristol. The money went to a charity that reaches out to street sex workers. “It’s good to show insight that these people are real people with real emotions and they deserve the same charity work as anyone else,” Sheeran said. “There’s a lot more popular charities that get a lot of attention. And with certain subjects like this they’re often washed over and people don’t necessarily give them the attention they deserve.”