Ed Sheeran Breaks Down How He Made ‘Shape Of You’

Ed Sheeran
Ed Sheeran at Nationwide Arena in Columbus, Ohio. / Facebook

Having finished the material for his album ÷, Ed Sheeran went into a typical studio session to brainstorm ideas for other artists. Sheeran, who often writes songs for other musicians, put down five tracks that day for the likes of DJ Snake and Liam Payne. One of them was also the smash hit, “Shape Of You,” which he had intended to give to Rihanna or Rudimental.

“I didn’t make the song to be mine to sing,” said Sheeran in a video for The New York Times. In the clip, Sheeran and producer/songwriters Steve Mac and Johnny McDaid explain how they made “Shape Of You.” They discuss how they constructed the track as well as how they worked out their differences with the lyrics. Sheeran also talks about how his label head questioned why he would give the song away.

“I don’t really know what it means to choose a hit,” Sheeran says. “I just like writing songs.”

It’s safe to say keeping “Shape Of You” was a smart decision. The track went on to have massive success, breaking the record for most weeks in the top 10 of Billboard’s Hot 100 and becoming the most-streamed song ever on Spotify. It also topped Billboard’s year-end singles chart and was the 3rd most-downloaded track of 2017 on DJcity.

Watch how “Shape Of You” was made below.

Related: Ed Sheeran Gives TLC’s ‘No Scrubs’ Writers Credit on ‘Shape of You’