Gig Review: Ed Sheeran at Fly Music Festival 2015
The Brit singer songwriter live looped his way through his India debut
March 1, 2015, Race Course, Mumbai: It was an unusually cloudy weekend for Mumbai and Brit singer-songwriter Ed Sheeran’s fans found their spot of sunshine on Sunday evening. Sheeran walked onto stage with a wide smile to greet the deafening cheers before launching into “I’m A Mess” from his second album x. It was only when the screaming of adolescent female fans died down a bit, did the red-haired singer [unecessarily] introduce himself. While the organizers claimed Sheeran drew a crowd of 10,000, our guestimate suggests that half the number made it to South Mumbai for the concert.
Looking sharp in a cobalt blue kurta for his India debut, Sheeran wasted no time, belting out one song after another, with only minute-long breaks to retool the loop machine. His second track “Lego House,” from his debut album +, began with an unfamiliar solo, although the Lego blocks on the graphic monitors gave him away. This was followed by an extended version of “Don’t,” Sheeran’s set favorite, which turned into an eight-minute mash-up of “Nina,” American singer Chris Brown’s “Loyal” [also from an album named X and also released in 2014, the same year that Sheeran’s x released] and “No Diggity” by American R&B group Blackstreet.
Sheeran also had the audience singing along to his hit “Drunk” and once the crowd chorus faded, Sheeran switched to rap to his track “Take it Back” with a beatbox section that he paused to loop live. He had his tweenage fans (girls, of course) screaming along to back-to-back performances of “Kiss Me” and “Thinking Out Loud.” And the guys in the crowd got sucked into the performance once Sheeran launched into “I See Fire” (from OST The Hobbit: Desolation of Smaug).
An hour into the performance, Sheeran stopped singing, put his guitar away and sat cross-legged on stage after performing “A-Team,” announcing that his next song would be the last if the crowd didn’t sing-along loud enough. Smiling at the ruckus he was responsible for, Sheeran began “Give Me Love,” also from his debut +. The singer also effortlessly shredded an acoustic guitar solo and threw in bits of 50 Cent’s “In Da Club” and Iggy Azalea’s “Fancy” in his chart topping track “You Needs Me, I Don’t Need You.”
Almost two hours into the show, the singer announced that he was wrapping up his show. “Mumbai, I never want you to stop singing again. I want you to sing as you leave, sing all the way to your cars…,” he said as he began his track “Sing,” from his second album x. Sheeran proved this weekend that Mumbai could definitely rock out to a one-man show – some Billboard topping tracks, a great voice, some gangsta rap and a fantastic set of guitars do the trick.
I’m a Mess
Take it back
Thinking out loud
I see fire
Give me love
You Need Me, I Don’t Need You