Ed Sheeran's Early Life:
Ed Sheeran's route to success is one fueled by pure determination with a healthy dose of talent. He was born February 17, 1991 in Halifax, England. Ed Sheeran learned guitar and began writing songs as a child. He refers to Van Morrison as an artist that he heard frequently in those years.
Discovery and Recording Contract:
Ed Sheeran began recording in 2005 and started self-releasing both EPs and albums. In 2009, after hearing that singer-songwriter James Morrison played 200 shows in one year, he decided to break that record. Ultimately Ed Sheeran performed 312 shows in 2009. In 2010 he decided to head to Los Angeles looking for a breakthrough. Ed Sheeran booked his trip with only one contact for an open mic poetry night. After performing at open mic shows all around the area, he was spotted by Jamie Foxx who offered him recording help and housing for the rest of his time in Los Angeles. With his online fan base growing larger and larger, Atlantic Records signed Ed Sheeran to a recording contract in early 2011.
"The A Team":
On April 22, 2011, the music video for Ed Sheeran's official debut single, was posted to YouTube. Four days later he appeared on Later...With Jools Holland. Six weeks later the song was released for digital download. It debuted at #3 on the UK pop singles chart becoming the highest charting and fastest selling debut single of 2011. "The A Team" became a top 10 hit across much of Europe and Australia and New Zealand as well.
Ed Sheeran's next single, the hip hop influenced "You Need Me, I Don't Need You," was another top 5 hit single and reached #1 on the UK R&B chart. The debut album + followed in September and opened at the top of the UK album chart. It ultimately was certified triple platinum and ranked among the top 10 selling albums of the year in the UK. The album's third single "Lego House" once again reached the pop top 5, and, in 2012, Ed Sheeran set his sights on the US being ranked as one of the Top 10 Artists To Watch in 2012.