Singer-songwriter Ed Sheeran says he’s realized something about himself: He performs best when he’s hung over.
So he “made sure” to go out drinking the night before his three sold-out shows at Wembley Stadium in London last summer.
“I don’t know why the best gigs I’ve ever played have been after real heavy nights,” the 24-year-old Sheeran said in a recent interview. “I think it’s just because you walk onstage, you’re not complacent, you’re not onstage being like, ‘Oh, I’ve done this a million times.’ You walk onstage being like, ‘You know, I’m 90 percent the human I should be so I’ll make sure I give 115 percent.'”
Sheeran’s performances at Wembley Stadium were filmed for the new concert film Jumpers for Goalposts.
The film, which will have its world premiere at London’s Leicester Square on Thursday – where Sheeran will also perform – will screen in selected theaters worldwide Friday through Sunday.
“I just find whenever I’m on a British Airlines flight I always watch someone’s concert film and it always like, I was never really a fan of Justin Bieber, and then I watched ‘Never Say Never’ and then it made sense, so I was like, ‘Oh, oh. I get it now.’
“So I wanted to make a film that I could put on British Airlines flights and have Chinese businessmen like my music,” Sheeran said with a laugh.
He believes a big reason why he was able to play Wembley Stadium is his success on Spotify. His song “Thinking out Loud” has set a Spotify record for reaching 500 million streams. The streaming service says he’s second in streams behind Eminem.
Not every musician is a fan of Spotify, like Sheeran’s pal Taylor Swift, who pulled her songs from the site last year. (Some artists don’t like Spotify because they receive small royalty rates for their songs.)
“The Spotify thing is a weird argument,” said Sheeran. “A lot of people go on about the financial thing with Spotify and I definitely do agree with that for small artists and writers who are looking to get checks and stuff like that, but I think if you’re a big touring artist you shouldn’t really complain about it because I can now tour all around the world doing stadiums from Spotify.”
“I can go to Norway and Iceland and Thailand, just like random places where CD sales are not prevalent,” he said. “… So Spotify, for me, it works, because I am a touring act.”
He said the conversation with Spotify is more for new, upcoming acts and writers. “I think that’s where the revenue should go, but I think when you’re a big touring act use it to your advantage.”