Ed Sheeran has said that he doesn’t see the point in music critics.
According to Rolling Stone, the singer-songwriter was referring to the age of streaming and how music is now more accessible than ever. Sheeran suggested that critics are no longer needed to guide listeners or help them engage.
“Why do you need to read a review? Listen to it. It’s freely available! he told the publication. “Make up your own mind. I would never read an album review and go, ‘I’m not gonna listen to that now.’”
Sheeran’s comments were met with mixed reaction by people online. One person wrote: “ok except music critics aren’t just there for ppl to decide what to listen to?? taking a deeper look at music thru a deeper critical lense, both positive and negative, is a celebration of music as a whole if anything.”
Another said: “80% of the time I’d agree. But the best reviewers also help me learn how to interpret music in a new way. They also help me learn about the history of music. There’s a lot about music that goes beyond just how it sounds to my ear (in my humble opinion).”
80% of the time I’d agree. But the best reviewers also help me learn how to interpret music in a new way. They also help me learn about the history of music. There’s a lot about music that goes beyond just how it sounds to my ear (in my humble opinion).
— Ryan (@ryanhealy) March 28, 2023
Elsewhere, some people said that they agreed with Sheeran. “He’s absolutely right,” one person wrote, while another said: “he kinda real for that not gonna lie.”
He’s absolutely right.
— Olumide (@Olumide301) March 28, 2023
Sheeran’s comments about music criticism were shared by Rolling Stone in supplementary material that was omitted from the March cover interview with the star.
Among that was the revelation that Jay-Z “respectfully passed” on featuring on the singer’s hit single ‘Shape Of You’.
‘Shape Of You’ was released at the start of 2017 and went five times platinum in its first year, becoming one of the biggest UK singles of all time on streaming services.
Sheeran told Rolling Stone that he was “in touch” with the legendary New York rapper’s team about a collaboration, but that it was turned down on Jay-Z’s side.
“We were in touch,” Sheeran said. “I sent him the song, and he said, ‘I don’t think the song needs a rap verse.’ He was probably right. He’s got a very, very good ear. He usually gets things right. It was a very natural, respectful pass.”
This May, Sheeran will release new album ‘-‘ (pronounced ‘Subtract’). That record is set to arrive on May 5 via Asylum/Atlantic (pre-order/pre-save here), with a Disney+ documentary Ed Sheeran: The Sum of it All premiering on May 3.