Ed Sheeran may be a chart-topping Grammy-winning artist, but that doesn’t mean he doesn’t get nervous before he debuts new music.
The 32-year-old singer unveiled three new songs, “American Town,” “Blue” and “Magical” during his Amazon Music Live performance Thursday night in Los Angeles.
Before playing “American Town,” Ed admitted it was his first time playing the song live with a band for an audience.
“I’m not going to lie, I’m nervous, but I hope it’s going to go well,” he said to the enthusiastic crowd.
Later in his set, he delved deeper into the inspiration behind his new album, revealing it was inspired by Edward Elgar’s “Enigma Variations,” which has 14 compassions about his friends.
“My dad told me about it, and I was like, ‘No one’s done a modern spin on that,'” he said. “I thought that would be quite cool and my friends all had different things going on. Like either they were falling in love and it was magical, or they were breaking up, or they were having babies or they were going into real low points of their depression. I wrote 14 songs about 14 friends.”
Although the intimate concert was upbeat and fun, with the energetic crowd belting out his music, Ed did slow things down to pay tribute to his late friend, Jamal Edwards, by singing “Eyes Closed.” He wrote the tune following his death in 2022.
“This next song, I wrote about my friend Jamal who passed away last February, ” he told the audience. “In the month between him passing away and his funeral, if anyone in this room has gone through grief, you’ll know that there’s this some sort of like disbelief period. In that month, I didn’t believe that he passed away and it wasn’t until getting to the funeral and realizing that he was never coming back, would it actually hit home. But I wrote this song in that month period, when I thought he might come back.”
Regardless of if he was debuting new music or having an intimate moment with the audience, Ed kept the fans fully engaged during his hour-long set. He sang 15 songs including his biggest hits like “The A Team,” “Shivers,” “Shape of You” and “Perfect.”
And for the majority of the concert, it was just Ed and his guitar as his passionate fans watched him create melodies and produce the tracks to his biggest hits live with his loop station.
“I basically record loops. I control it with my feet and then I layer on top of it,” he explained.
Ed’s new album “Autumn Variations” comes out Friday, Sept. 29.
Fans can continue to tune in to Amazon Music Live hosted by 2 Chainz every Thursday following Thursday Night Football on Prime Video and the Amazon Music channel on Twitch.