Ed Sheeran and One Direction Brought a Whole New British Invasion

Photo: Fanpop
Photo: Fanpop

Ed Sheeran has had one heck of a year; not only did his second studio album X hit number one in both the US and the UK, but Spotify announced him as the most-streamed artist of 2014 and he booked three solo gigs (two are already sold out) at London’s Wembley Stadium for 2015.

Oh, and he was part of a proposal video alongside Bob Geldof and Cee Lo Green. How adorable is that?

However, Sheeran has been busy behind the scenes as well, writing not only for himself but for fellow British songsters One Direction – well, they’re British/Irish actually (sorry Niall).

Sheeran wrote the song “18” for 1D’s worldwide smash hit album Four. Although it wasn’t the first tune he’s written for the band, he’s obviously very proud of it.

Speaking to Capital FM recently, Sheeran said of the track; “It’s the first record I’ve actually specifically written for them…the other ones were my records that just didn’t make it only my album, just because I had too many slow songs. But this one, I remember I had a meeting with them and he said we need a song. And the day after I wrote it and sent it over, and they sound great on it! It’s good”.

Like Sheeran, One Direction are embarking on a stadium tour (for the second year running) next year. Again, he is full of praise for Harry, Louis, Liam, Niall and Zayn; “I think it’s great for them to be at stadium level. I think it’s fantastic the success they’re having and really flying the British and Irish flag everywhere around the world. It was a very good thing”.

It seems Sheeran loves the adorable One Direction lads just as much as the rest of us – and what’s not to love? The hard-working band will next be seen on December 31 on Dick Clark’s New Year’s Rockin’ Eve alongside Sheeran’s bff Taylor Swift.

One Direction will then be taking a short break – we hope – before starting their world tour in Sydney, Australia on February 7.

The 1D lads, together with Sheeran and Sam Smith, have pretty much dominated the charts both at home and stateside in 2014, and many have heralded them as the “next British invasion”.

Whilst I agree, obviously, that the best and brightest of musical talent over the last few decades has come from these tiny islands, I don’t think “invasion” is the proper word. After all, you can’t invade if you never left in the first place. The Brits (and Irish) are here to stay in popular music, and everyone should just settle in and enjoy the ride.

Whilst you’re waiting for One Direction to appear in Times Square, have another listen to “18”. There’s definitely a Sheeran sound to the song, made all the more sweeter by 1D’s vocals, and I can’t wait to hear their next collaboration.

Sara Hunter Smith