On Tuesday night we both had the absolute pleasure of attending a secret Ed Sheeran gig after Liz won a double pass to the I Heart Radio show through Kiis fm. Having loved Ed's music since his debut album ‘+’ in 2011, and having already been to his sold out Sydney concert last year, we were ecstatic that he was coming back to promote his latest album ‘x’ and we had the highly sought after tickets. The arrangement of the secret shows was inspired by the title of his new album, in that Ed would play at a very small venue, such as a lucky fan’s house in Melbourne, then multiply the number of concert goers two more times at other venues. Our concert was the third and final big Australian show, after he had played in Melbourne the day before.
After some schedule shuffling, we cleared our afternoon to prepare to line up and hopefully get front and centre at the gig. The idea was that we wouldn’t receive confirmation of the time or venue until a couple of hours prior to the concert. Though, being as eager and excited as we were, we tried our luck at emailing and seeing if we could find out the details a little bit earlier, and it worked! The venue was Paddington Town Hall and having already had uni classes in the city, we headed there as soon as we could. After arriving five and a half hours prior to when the show was expected to commence, it made sense that we were the second in line. In front of us were two other fans who were equally as excited and ended up bonding with us over our mutual love for Ed.
Fast-forward five and a half hours of standing/sitting/talking/eating/boredom/ excitement and rage at people trying to push in line, we were finally let through the doors and rushed to the front of the stage. About an hour later Ed walked on stage with the only forms of backup he needs: his guitar and loop pedal. He kicked off the show with an extended version of crowd favourite 'You Need Me, I Don't Need You' which left all the wannabe rappers in the crowd out of breath by its end. Ed then announced that if anyone had a curfew or other plans that night, well too bad, because he would be playing for as long as he liked as this was his final show in the country, suiting us just fine. He performed an array of songs to around 700 fans, ranging from classics from his debut album, a Nina Simone cover and his chart topping ballad 'I See Fire' from the latest Hobbit film. He also threw in some exclusive tracks from his soon-to-be released album including the somewhat scandalous 'Sing', 'Take it Back', and a personal favourite, the tear invoking 'Tenerife Sea'.
One of the most mesmerising moments was when he unplugged his microphone and guitar and stood at the front of the stage (close enough to touch) and played a couple of songs to a crowd who were in complete silence. The show lasted for 90 minutes and ended with the crowd continually singing a line from "Sing" whilst Ed left the stage until the lights came back up and it was apparent that there would be no encore. The whole show in itself was fulfilling enough that the crowd was happy enough to move on out. This has definitely got to be one of the most amazing concerts we have been to and the sheer talent and range of Ed Sheeran will surely be difficult to forget. The above photographs are evidence enough of the perfection we experienced that night.
♫ ♪ One - Ed Sheeran ♫ ♪