Smart Music Live sets off hot summer concert calendar on April 8 at MOA
British superstar Ed Sheeran finally fulfills his promise of resuming what was meant to be a massive Asian concert tour in November 2017, suddenly cancelled due to a bicycling accident.
Explaining to fans, the singer-songwriter posted a picture of his arm in a cast on Instagram, writing, “A visit to my doctors confirmed fractures in my right wrist and left elbow that will leave me unable to perform live concerts for the immediate future. I’m waiting to see how the healing progresses before we have to decide on shows beyond that. Please stay tuned for more details.”
All mended four months after, the artist is happily setting off his tour in Manila on Sunday, April 8 at the Mall of Asia (MOA) Concert Grounds. He then moves on to Japan to do a series of shows in Osaka and Tokyo, after which he proceeds to multi-stops in Europe and North America, through to November this year.
Recording Artist of the Year
In February, Sheeran was named 2017 Global Recording Artist of the Year by the International Federation of the Phonographic Industry (IFPI) with three hit singles produced from his third studio album “Divide.” “Shape Of You,” “Castle On The Hill” and the current favorite song of hundreds of millions around the world, “Perfect,” are the latest additions to the 27-year-old prodigy’s reputation as a new generation music icon.
In bestowing the honor to Sheeran, the global music-industry trade organization said that Divide, released in March 2017, “was the global best-selling album of last year and has been certified multi-platinum in 36 markets [including the Philippines and across Asia], while Shape Of You was the best-selling single globally and has been certified as multi-platinum in 32 markets.”
The occasion was also the first time that the title Global Recording Artist of the Year was given to a single artist for best-selling album and single of the year since the IFPI’s launching year in 2013. Previous honorees were One Direction (2013), Taylor Swift (2014), Adele (2015) and Drake (2016).
Meanwhile, Warner Music UK CEO and chairman Max Lousada congratulated the entire Atlantic Records team for the feat. “Being crowned the biggest star in the world, with the biggest song and biggest album, is the result of years of ambition, creativity, and hard word on a global scale. Congrats also to Stuart Camp, the Atlantic teams in the UK and US, and everyone at Warner who contributed to Ed’s amazing success story.”
In announcing the accolade, IFPI executive France Moore said, “It’s wonderful to be able to announce Ed Sheeran as the IFPI Global Recording Artist 2017. The success Ed has achieved is astonishing and testament to his ability to write and perform songs that connect with a truly global fan base.”
From choir to int’l stardom
As reported by AFP, the bespectacled singer cut his musical teeth from the age of four at a local church choir. He also learned to play the guitar and write songs at a very young age.
Sheeran eventually honed his talent by busking and playing in bars, landing breakthrough international success with his 2014 love ballad “Thinking Out Loud,” and which became the first song on Spotify to be streamed half a billions times.
His latest album Divide also smashed Spotify records, drawing 57 million listens on the first day of its release—nearly twice the previous highest. It was a phenomenal hit in his native Britain as well as in Ireland, where he traces ancestry and whose traditional music he incorporated into two songs in the album.
Fans all over the globe usually camp out a day before an Ed Sheeran concert, just like the Australians for whom he last performed in late March at the Sunport Stadium. To the fans’ surprise, the superstar rewarded those with standing tickets with free pizza delivered to them!
Time will soon tell if he will do the same in Manila come Sunday, which will mark his second concert in the Philippines. Sheeran first performed here in March 2015 at the Mall of Asia Arena and said at that time, “This is honestly, hand over heart, the best reception I’ve ever received, ever… This is my first trip to the Philippines and it definitely won’t be my last. This has been an amazing night!”
Three years since he first came to perform for Filipinos—mostly millennials who know all the lyrics to every song played on the radio or streamed through Spotify and heard through YouTube—Sheeran will surely be overwhelmed when he sees every space of the massive MOA Concert Grounds filled with fans, many of whom won their tickets from co-presenter Smart Music Live.
His concert kicks off the telecommunication giant’s red hot summer line up, which will have Bruno Mars’ 24K Magic in Manila next up on May 3, also at the Mall of Asia Arena. To qualify for perks and free tickets, simply track #SmartEdSheeran, #SmartBrunoMars and #SmartMusicLive on Smart’s official Facebook, Instagram and Twitter accounts.