With over a decade in the music industry and loads of great tracks, he should be considered a true British great. Here's all you need to get acquainted with one of our best modern songwriters...
1: Ed’s latest single “Hey Little Bruiser” is about his son, Franklyn.Â God knows tunes about parenthood can be a mixed bag (ahem) , but this piano-led ditty is just about the most poignant and self-effacing ode to being a dad youâ€™ll ever hear, especially when he drops: â€śYou got the good bits from your mama, and your bad bits from me.â€ť
2: Thatâ€™s not even the best bit. This is when the strings kick and we are treated (and it is a treat) to: â€śWhere would we be with the dreamers, who pay no heed to good advice?â€ťÂ If you arenâ€™t affected by these lines, for their sake I hope you donâ€™t have children.
3: You may or may not know this but heâ€™s a bit of a veteran.Â His first album, Here Be Monsters, came out in 2001.Â Since then heâ€™s released nearly an album a year, including a 2CD Best Of.Â You want a nice summation of this dontcha? Well here it is- prolific.
4: Here Be Monsters is a minor post-millennial classic.Â I mean itâ€™s very, very good.Â It was nominated for a Mercury Music Prize, which as M People will attest, is a sure sign of class. To be fair, it did lose to Songs From The City, Stories From The Sea.
5: If I am any sort of vanguard of its quality (and for the duration of this article I am nominating myself as such), although it came out in 2001 and I have probably listened to 400 times and made most of the people I know do the same, I have never got bored of it.
6:Â It has a song called “She Fell Into My Arms” which might be the perfect pop song.Â Listen to it and concur, please:
7: Everyone I know that got into that album has stayed in touch with Ed throughout his career, and still pipe up his name when asked about their favourite English songwriters.Â Â Which leads conveniently toâ€¦
8: One of the great puzzles is that he’s never really made the jump from beard-strokerâ€™s delight.Â His tunes are mostly accessible, they generally concern all those lovely/terrifying universal messages, he looks quite nice, some of his stuff wouldnâ€™t sound out of place on Radio 2.Â I donâ€™t pretend to know the whys and why nots, but given the consistent level of his output itâ€™s a mystery that he hasnâ€™t had the relative ubiquity of a Badly Drawn Boy or a Richard Hawley.
9: If ever there was going to be a song that got him to the sanctified environs of playlists A and B it would have been â€śThis Oneâ€™s For You.”Â It is a dreadfully pretty song and the chorus goes: â€śMy oh my oh my Iâ€™ve had a few/my oh my oh my, this oneâ€™s for you”Â Thatâ€™s good that is.
10: â€śThis Oneâ€™s For Youâ€ť is from an album called Strangers, which also has a brilliant song called â€śLoneliness.”Â It’s glorious when he does this live and his backing singers The Langley Sisters (one of whom is his wife) have a bash at the chorus and so do the audience and everyone has a right lovely time:
11: His wife is called Gita.Â If you watch the â€śHey Little Bruiserâ€ť video youâ€™ll see her name is in a burning heart on his arm, which is nice.
12: His first five albums were released on EMI imprint Heavenly.Â His most recent, Back Into The Woods, is the first release on CCCLX. This is the new baby of a certain Sean Adams, who is the founding editor of Drowned in Sound and general music industry savant.Â The guy knows his rhubarb and having him behind you is a Simon Cowell style seal of approval for people your nan wonâ€™t have heard of.
13: Back Into The Woods was recorded in just six hours. Six.Â Itâ€™s got nine songs.Â I canâ€™t do nine pull-ups in six hours.
14: It might have been recorded in an instant, but it sounds anything other than throwaway. Check out the title track.
15: If you like men singing songs at a piano in a generally melancholic way that take in the gothic, the joyful and a fair whack of the blues, you will really dig him.
16: Okay, okay, fans of Cave, Waits, McGowan, (Dennis) Wilson, McCrae, Badly Drawn Boy, Walker and the rest need all take note.
17: Like several of those just mentioned, heâ€™s a proper showman live . Heâ€™s often singing tunes that may appear a little down-at-heel, but they really rattle along with his piano before occasionally twisting your heart with the sort of angst thatâ€™ll have you declaring yourself the eye-watery victim of a flash, two-minute cold.
18: Â He seems to have a shitloads of confidence in his ability; no shoegazing to be found here.Â If you donâ€™t believe me, get along to one these shows coming up. Most of them are in churches, which’ll be pretty much the perfect setting.
19: Heâ€™s headlining the last ever gig at The Bull and Gate.Â That will be magic.
20:Â I have had the fortune of being on the peripheries of the music industry for a while now and been in the vicinity of my fair share of heroes and demi-heroes, and Ed is the only person I have bundled up to interrupted, and told how much I liked.Â He was a bit ambivalent, which is fair enough considering it was a Friday night in a on the balcony of a packed club and he was in the middle of a conversation.Â In a lifetime of not-very-cool moments, this was one of the least refined.
21: Â Despite appearances to the contrary, I havenâ€™t got a mancrush on Ed.Â (Iâ€™d happily admit if I did.) He just deserves your attention.
Follow David on Twitter- @Gobshout