He’s a music superstar! Ed Sheeran has released five studio albums since his claim to fame, and fans are always hoping for more music.

Although he’s become a major success story in the music industry, things for the “Lego House” singer weren’t always as perfect as they seemed. After releasing his third record, Divide, in 2017, Ed almost quit music.

“The album was bigger than people thought it was gonna be,” he told Today in January 2022. “And then suddenly, you come to the end of this thing and you have the biggest streaming song in the world, the most attended tour in the world, the highest-grossing tour in the world, the album sold 25 million copies, and then everyone’s kinda looking at you going, ‘Hey, yeah. We’re gonna do that again, but better.’ And I didn’t want that pressure.”

So, he took a much-needed hiatus. In December 2019, the “Castle on the Hill” crooner penned a note to fans — which was shared via Instagram — revealing that he was “gonna go on another break again.”

Ed wrote: “The Divide era and tour changed my life in so many ways, but now it’s all over it’s time to go out and see some more of the world. I’ve been a bit non stop since 2017 so I’m just gonna take a breather to travel, write, and read. I’ll be off social media until it’s time to come back. To my family and friends, see ya when I see ya — And to my fans, thank you for always being amazing, I promise to be back with some new music when the time is right and I’ve lived a little more to actually have something to write about.”

During his interview with Today, Ed reflected on this time in his life.

“It wasn’t retiring, but it was retiring from giving a f–k,” he shared. “I wasn’t necessarily wanting to step away from music, but I was definitely wanting to step away from it being a professional hobby.”

Amid his break, Ed welcomed a daughter named Lyra Antarctica in September 2020 with Cherry Seaborn, whom he married in 2019.

Then, he made his return to music and his album = was released in October 2021.

“I’ve written around 230 songs over the past few years, hundreds and hundreds, and only now am I at the stage where all that hard work is being released into the world again,” he shared with British GQ in September 2021. “I finished = in January and I’ve been tweaking and fine-tuning it since then; production bits and bobs. I’m actually going to master the record today.”

Scroll through our gallery to see Ed’s total transformation over the years. 

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