Ed Sheeran taking a break from touring

British singer-songwriter Ed Sheeran performing at the National Stadium in April.
British singer-songwriter Ed Sheeran performing at the National Stadium in April.PHOTO: ST FILE

LONDON • Ed Sheeran fans who did not attend his most recent Singapore concert in April are likely to have to wait at least 18 months for him to hit the stage again.

The British superstar, 28, who ended his Divide world tour on Monday in his home town of Ipswich in England, told the crowd that he will be taking a break.

Noting that he has been on the road for more than two years, he said: "This is the last day of the whole thing. There is something bittersweet about it.

"I love that you guys are here and we are ending it in Ipswich. This is my last gig for probably 18 months."

The Perfect singer added: "I was told before I came on that now at the end of this tour, I've played to nine million people around the world. It's been an emotional day for a lot of people backstage. It kind of feels like, in a weird way, that you're breaking up with a girlfriend whom you've been with for years."

Later, he posted on Instagram to put everything on record: "9 million people, 893 days, 46 countries, 175 cities, 260 shows, 268 touring crew, 193,265 miles travelled, 2 broken arms, 3 marriages, 4 babies. What a wild ride this Divide tour has been.

"The whole process of writing the album starting in 2015, then recording it in 2016, promoting it, setting out on the road to play it for all of you guys. It's so weird to put it to bed and move on."

But he may not be getting that much rest ahead. Fox News reported that he faces a lawsuit for allegedly lifting the chorus of his hit, Shape Of You (2017), from a song by musician Sam Chokri. The case could be heard in court next year.

Amid speculation that the legal tussle could end up with Sheeran calling it a day, he posted: "I'm not retiring either. The press are being overly dramatic. I'm having 18 months off to make another album and hang out with my cats."

He might just do the odd musical job - record the theme song for upcoming James Bond movie No Time To Die, a possibility which has been raised by British media outlets.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on August 31, 2019, with the headline 'Ed Sheeran taking a break from touring'. Print Edition | Subscribe