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Ed Sheeran defends himself on Twitter after being accused of playing over backing track during Glastonbury set

PUBLISHED: 15:50 26 June 2017 | UPDATED: 09:21 27 June 2017

Ed Sheeran performing on the Pyramid stage at Glastonbury Festival. Picture: YUI MOK/PA WIRE

Ed Sheeran performing on the Pyramid stage at Glastonbury Festival. Picture: YUI MOK/PA WIRE


Ed Sheeran has hit back at critics who claimed his headline Glastonbury set was played over a backing track.

Suffolk’s homegrown star, who opened the festival’s closing set on the Pyramid stage on Sunday night with his ode to his home county, Castle On The Hill, attracted a mixed response from fans, many of whom were perturbed that he appeared to be playing with the help of a backing track rather than a live band.

Ed took to Twitter yesterday to defend himself and pointed out “everything” he does in his show is live. He wrote: “Never thought I’d have to explain it, but everything I do in my live show is live, it’s a loop station, not a backing track. Please google x.”

He added: “Anyway, great night, great atmosphere, family, friends, fun. Love you all.”

While many fans and critics alike praised the singer-songwriter’s “amazing” performance, his use of a loop pedal did appear to cause some confusion.

One wrote: “Is it a backing track or invisible musicians?!? Who’s playing when Ed Sheeran stops?!? #GlastonburyFestival.”

Another said: “Mystified by Ed Sheeran’s live performance. He seems to record something, loop it, and then perform to a backing track? Not impressed…”

But others rushed to his defence, one said: “I can’t believe that there are still people in the world who think Ed Sheeran uses a backing track. EVERYTHING IS LIVE. EVERY SOUND IS HIM.”

The mechanism allows the Framlingham singer, 26, to create different layers to his tracks throughout his performance, building on each song, adding different guitar melodies, percussive use of his guitar and vocal harmonies, which he then performs his track over.

Festivalgoers watch Ed Sheeran performing on the Pyramid stage at Glastonbury Festival. Picture: BEN BIRCHALL/PA WIREFestivalgoers watch Ed Sheeran performing on the Pyramid stage at Glastonbury Festival. Picture: BEN BIRCHALL/PA WIRE

But the reviews were not all bad.
The NME hailed the “fire in his belly” in a headline slot it described as a “triumph”, before going on to call it a masterclass in playing a huge stage, while the Guardian gave the singer’s set four out of five stars, describing him as “thrillingly raw and defiantly alone”.

As well as taking fans on a journey through his three hit albums, Ed, who admitted to being nervous on the night, said of his headline slot: “I would like to say it was a dream of mine.

“But I never thought I would even get to the point where I was playing this stage, let alone headlining it.”

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