Ed Sheeran Has Shared His Strategy For Front Row Seats At His Shows, And His Reasoning Is Perfect

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Throughout the years, music has remained one of the most popular forms of entertainment across the world. Indeed, regardless of the genre, artists can still connect to various audiences via their unique sounds. But when it comes to the industry’s continued success, the rise of upcoming talent plays an integral role.

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In more recent times, Ed Sheeran has become one of the biggest success stories in the music industry. After showcasing his skills as a teenager, the promising singer arrived in London, U.K., in an attempt to kick-start a potential career. However, few people could’ve predicted what happened next.

Thanks to websites such as YouTube, Sheeran’s work attracted a growing number of followers, leading to a big moment in 2011. At that point, the rising star was recruited by a record label, with his first studio release hitting the shelves that fall. From there, his popularity continued to hit new heights.

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Sheeran has since established himself as one of the most recognizable artists in the music industry today. Indeed, his albums have reached over 150 million sales across the world. But back in 2014, though, the superstar made an interesting announcement regarding the price of tickets for his Australian tour the following year.

Born in February 1991, Sheeran spent the early years of his life in Halifax, U.K., alongside his brother, Matthew, and their parents. During that period, the youngster began to show an interest in music after joining the choir at a nearby church. And as time went on, that passion continued to grow.

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While at school, Sheeran tried his hand at playing an instrument, adding the guitar to his repertoire of skills. However, his burgeoning talents didn’t end there. After his family relocated to Suffolk, U.K., the future superstar started to write his own music at his new high school.

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On that note, Sheeran then worked on his debut record, with the Halifax native looking back on that period in the book Ed Sheeran: A Visual Journey. “In 2004 I made my first album, Spinning Man, named after a picture that my dad had,” he recalled. “I burnt the CDs myself and made the covers.”

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From there, Sheeran talked about the tracks on the album, paying close attention to his lyrics. “There were 14 songs and they were all songs that rhymed,” he wrote in the book. “One lyric went, ‘I’m a typical average teen, if you know what I mean.’” At that point, the singer made an intriguing admission.

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Sheeran continued, “There are probably 20 copies of Spinning Man in existence and I have 19 of them. I don’t want anyone else to get hold of a copy. Most of the songs were about a girl called Claire. She was my first love when I was 13.” After revealing his inspiration, the Halifax native then spoke about the heartbreak that followed.

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“It was a very innocent love and we only ever held hands, but it lasted a fair amount of time,” Sheeran added. “Then came my first devastating break-up. Looking back, it really wasn’t that bad, but at the time it was soul-shattering. When [Claire] left me, I wrote a lot of songs off the back of it – my first love songs.”

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Off the back of that, Sheeran eventually packed his bags for London, as he tried to take his budding career to the next level during 2008. The future star honed his talents by performing gigs throughout the city. However, later that spring he went on to earn a bit of luck.

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Sheeran’s skills were then noticed by the folk band Nizlopi during that period, with whom he was working as a technician. As a result, the Halifax native was offered the chance to open for them during a performance in Norwich, U.K. From there, a number of other artists then opened the door to some similar opportunities.

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Indeed, Sheeran went on to work with the likes of Jay Sean and the Noisettes at that time. All of which saw him gaining more experience along the way. With those performances under his belt, the singer started to work on his next independent album, titled You Need Me, in 2009. But the excitement didn’t end there.

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Following the release of You Need Me, Sheeran went on the road with hip hop artist Just Jack. He performed so much, in fact, that the singer eventually made over 300 appearances by the close of 2009, building his reputation in the industry. However, 2010 proved to be another busy year for the rising star.

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After seeing some of Sheeran’s work, rap artist Example recruited him for his latest tour that February. Alongside that, the Halifax native dropped his next album, titled Loose Change. The record proved to be a big hit with critics, but that wasn’t the only new material he shared in 2010.

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Following the release of Loose Change, Sheeran dropped two more albums later that year. The first was titled Ed Sheeran: Live at the Bedford, while the second was called Songs I Wrote with Amy. By this point, his talents were also getting noticed States-side, as proved when he visited Los Angeles, California.

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Indeed, during Sheeran’s time in the City of Angels, he received an offer to appear at a club named The Foxxhole. That particular establishment is operated by the Hollywood star Jamie Foxx, who was subsequently impressed by his performance. From there, the singer continued to pump out new content heading into 2011.

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That January Sheeran’s next album, titled No. 5 Collaborations Project, hit the airwaves. Despite all of his previous successes, though, this one proved the most significant. People started to take notice of the artist’s talents off the back of that record, as it climbed into the top two of the charts on iTunes.

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Up to that point, Sheeran was still releasing his albums independently as he wasn’t signed to any record label. So with that in mind, the major success of No. 5 Collaborations Project came as something of a surprise to the Halifax native. “I feel great, but it’s a lot to take in,” he told BBC News in January 2011.

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“[The album’s success] is all down to the fans being really supportive. They are the main reason it is where it is,” Sheeran continued. “No joke. I would have been happy for it to chart at 46. And I would have been happy for it to chart at 20. But when it got to number 12 I was like, ‘Okay, I want it to chart higher now.’”

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On that note, Sheeran then made a decisive move. “I started to push [the album] a bit more,” he said. “Then when it got to number four last night I thought I’ll leave this, wake up and it would have dropped to number 17 in the morning. I woke up and it was at number three.”

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While No. 5 Collaboration Project eventually jumped up another place to number two, Sheeran didn’t see it taking top spot. “Rihanna has got Jay Z behind her, The X Factor, three singles, music videos, radio, press,” he added. “So I won’t be too upset if I don’t get higher than her.”

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Meanwhile, the success of No. 5 Collaborations Project was significant for an additionally important reason. Indeed, Sheeran shopped the album around several record companies before releasing it himself. At that time, the labels advised him to drop it for nothing, but he had other ideas, pushing ahead with two different prices.

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Ultimately, the price structure was a decision that paid off for Sheeran. “I’ve been working as hard as possible, just becoming a work machine,” he told BBC News. “Not sleeping, doing a lot of gigs, writing a lot of songs. And when someone tells you that you can’t do something, [you] take it upon yourself to prove them wrong.”

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As a result of that success, Sheeran eventually signed a deal with Asylum Records in the spring of 2011, kicking off the next stage of his career. The singer worked on his very first studio record that year. But two singles from the album hit the airwaves before its release. “The A Team” was the first of those songs.

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On that note, “The A Team” cracked the top three of the U.K.’s singles charts, with the second song proving just as popular. Indeed, “You Need Me, I Don’t Need You” hit number four following its release that summer. However, the album itself fared even better in the charts.

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Sheeran’s first studio record, titled +, hit the shelves in September 2011. Incredibly, the album debuted at number one in the U.K charts, while taking fifth spot in the American standings. By the end of its opening week, + had sold over 100,000 units in the U.K., marking the Halifax native’s breakthrough.

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Off the back of that huge success, Sheeran then picked up two Brit Awards at the 2012 ceremony in February. From there, he continued to establish himself as one of the brightest stars in the industry, working with the likes of One Direction and Taylor Swift. But his rise didn’t end there, though.

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At the back-end of 2013, Sheeran performed at Madison Square Garden in New York, with all three of his shows selling out the famous arena. As his popularity continued to grow, the singer went on to release his sophomore album in June 2014. Titled x, the record was another smash-hit across the world.

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Indeed, x reached the top of the charts in both the U.K and America at that time, before securing an incredible record. By the end of 2014, it had become the most popular release of the year on Spotify, streaming over 400 million times. Prior to that, though, Sheeran had some good news for a portion of his fans.

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After Sheeran confirmed that he would be touring Australia in the spring of 2015, the price of the tickets were revealed. In a surprising move, fans were only charged 99 Australian dollars for the shows, equaling around $68 domestically. With that in mind, the superstar’s promoter reflected on the decision ahead of the tour.

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“[Sheeran] remembers lining up as a kid to get good tickets,” Michael Gudinski told News.com.au in September 2014. “And [he] believes that any fan should have the chance to get the best seats, not just the ones with the most money. I wish more artists would take this initiative.”

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That decision was certainly appreciated by the fans Down Under, as well as those living in New Zealand. Following the Australia dates, Sheeran was due to play for the latter in April 2015. One fan in particular commented on the pricing in response to a Daily Mail article covering the story, showing their delight.

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“Oh my God, I cannot wait for [Sheeran] to come to New Zealand,” wrote the online user on the Daily Mail website. “[I] just signed up for pre-sales. $99 is such a good price for Ed, all his songs are fabulous!” As a result of the pricing, Sheeran’s x tour proved to be a massive success in the Oceania region.

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Indeed, Sheeran was able to sell out all his dates in Australia, which in turn earned just under $10 million. By the conclusion of the x tour, the superstar’s shows had accumulated a total of $150 million in ticket sales around the world. At that point in time, there were few bigger names in the music industry than him.

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Meanwhile, x was still being lauded in 2015. Indeed, the record snagged the British Album of the Year gong at the Brit Awards. Alongside that, Sheeran’s sophomore effort also bagged two nominations at the Grammys. His fans would have to wait another two years, however, for his third studio album.

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In January 2017, Sheeran dropped two new songs, “Castle on the Hill” and “Shape of You.” But in a stunning turn of events, the singles occupied both the top and second spots in the U.K charts, making history along the way. As for the album, titled ÷, the Halifax native enjoyed even more success.

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Sheeran’s third album hit the shelves in March 2017 and immediately reached the top of the charts in various countries across the globe. In the U.K alone, ÷ became the quickest-selling record by a solo male act in the nation’s history. Incredibly, though, the eye-watering statistics didn’t end there.

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Indeed, ÷ sold over six million units worldwide by the end of 2017. Those sales made it the top-selling record of the year. In addition to that, the album also earned over three billion streams on Spotify, with no other artist able to better it. On that note, Sheeran then picked up the Best Pop Vocal Album gong at the Grammys.

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Off the back of that, Sheeran’s next piece of new material didn’t arrive until May 2019. Teaming up with Justin Bieber, the music superstar dropped a song titled “I Don’t Care” at that point. In some people’s opinion, that could be one of the singles from his follow-up record to ÷.

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