Global superstar Ed Sheeran has said he would be happy to play the first song at Prince Harry and Meghan Markle’s wedding reception.
After receiving an MBE for a glittering music career and his charity work, the singer-songwriter said he had not been asked by the prince and his fiancee to perform at the special one-off gig in May.
But asked if he would like to do it, he replied with a grin: “Yeah, why not?”
Sheeran’s MBE was presented by the Prince of Wales during a Buckingham Palace investiture ceremony.
The music star, who has enjoyed phenomenal worldwide success, spoke about his grandfather, Bill Sheeran, after the ceremony.
He said: “Do you know what I love? My grandfather was a massive royalist, he had all the commemorative plates and stuff, and he died on this day four years ago, so it’s actually quite a nice full-circle thing. I guess he’d be pretty proud.”
Sheeran’s career took off after the release of his debut CD in 2011 and since that time the 26-year-old has notched up three number one singles, along with three chart-topping albums.
His songwriting skills have seen him collaborate with artists like Taylor Swift and he penned the hit Love Yourself for Justin Bieber. He has also worked with US rapper Eminem.
Asked about the secret of his success, he played down his achievements, saying: “I think it’s persistence.
“I don’t have a vast amount of talent compared to other people, I think talent is like 30% of it and persistence, drive and self-belief are the other ones, which I guess are all the same thing.”
Charles was impressed by the musician’s globe-trotting activities as he was due to fly to New York later for a gig on Friday.
Sheeran, who looked smart in a morning suit, said of his brief chat with the prince: “He was asking me if I was still selling lots of records and I told him I’ve got a concert in New York tomorrow, and he was quite surprised I was flying after this.”
As a young boy Sheeran set his sights on becoming a performer and in his teenage years he pursued his dream, endlessly gigging and later releasing songs as he tried to gain a foothold in the music business.
His efforts caught the attention of Sir Elton John and Jamie Foxx, who both supported the fledgling musician.
After signing for a major label his debut album, + or Plus, sold six million copies and featured the hit single The A Team, which earned the musician the 2012 Ivor Novello Award for best song musically and lyrically.
Other accolades followed the release of his second album, X or Multiply, which won the 2015 Brit Award for album of the year, and Sheeran was also presented with an Ivor Novello Award for songwriter of the year.
He won two Grammy Awards at the 2016 ceremony for song of the year, Thinking Out Loud, and best pop solo performance.
Sheeran’s latest single, Perfect, newly re-worked as a duet with Beyonce, is expected to top the charts this week.
Speaking about the prospect of his fourth number one, Sheeran said: “Do you know what, it’s mad.
“Starting the year with a number one single and ending it with a number one single – I’ve never done that before.
“I’m very excited but I think it might have something to do with putting Beyonce on the song, I won’t take full credit.”
Sheeran was also enthusiastic about his time working with Eminem on the American’s latest album, describing the experience as “really amazing”.
The singer-songwriter added: “He was someone I obviously grew up listening to and have a huge amount of respect for.
“But he’s such a sweet nice guy, really friendly, proper family man, very musical, I really enjoyed my time with him.”
Sheeran’s MBE also recognised his charity work and he has supported a range of organisations including East Anglia’s Children’s Hospices, acting as an ambassador.
He said he was dashing off to have a celebratory curry with his parents, John and Imogen Sheeran, in central London, before catching his flight to New York.