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Ed Sheeran a man of many musical projects

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COURTESY BEN WATTS
Folk singer-songwriter Ed Sheeran is headlining
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The past two years have been banner ones for ginger-haired English folkie Ed Sheeran, whose unassuming little single “The A Team” – from his debut disc “+” – earned him two Brit Awards, a coveted Ivor Novello and a Grammy nomination; he performed at the 2013 Grammy ceremony backed by Elton John. He recorded and toured with another marquee-topping benefactor, Taylor Swift, then started his new R&B-influenced followup “X” (pronounced “multiply”) with assists from Snow Patrol’s Gary Lightbody and Johnny McDaid, plus Rick Rubin, Benny Blanco and the red-hot Pharrell Williams. On Sunday, he won a Best Male Video trophy at the MTV Video Music Awards for “Sing.” Now, at 23, he is a coliseum headliner.

Peter Jackson personally picked you to compose the closing-credits song for his “The Hobbit-The Desolation of Smaug.” How did you get word?

Well, New Zealand is a very small place, really. So I was doing a radio show there one morning, and the girl that was the host was friends with the Jacksons. So she wanted to take us to his Weta Workshop – she said that she could probably get us in there, so we could see what was going on. And that was that.

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What did Jackson want for the song, “I See Fire”?

Well, because there was such an intense ending to the film, he wanted a song to kind of ease the audience out. And that’s a song that I can’t really explain that much – it happened within an hour, and I didn’t really think too much about it. It was an immediate reaction to watching the film – I saw it without a lot of CGI in it or any music – and it all just came tumbling out.

You scored another closing-credit coup – “All of the Stars” for “The Fault in Our Stars.” Did you write it specifically for the movie?

Yeah – it was another assignment. So you have to choose what you want to convey, and how you want to say it. Because the whole point in the end-credit song is that you’re essentially being let out of whatever you’ve been in. So the “Fault” ending is very heartbreaking, so you want a song that lifts you up a bit. That’s why that track is a bit more mellow.

And you penned the “X” cut “Tenerife Sea” about feeling uncomfortable at the Grammys?

It was a very odd atmosphere, where everyone was out for themselves. And I found myself being competitive, as well, and pissed off that I didn’t win, which felt very unhealthy. When you go to an awards show in England, it’s a smaller industry and scene, so you really feel like you’re a part of something. And even if your mate wins, you’re happy for them.

IF YOU GO

Ed Sheeran

Where: SAP Center, 525 W. Santa Clara St., San Jose

When: 7:30 p.m. Aug. 26

Tickets: $56.50

Contact: (800) 745-3000, www.ticketmaster.com



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