The man who taught Ed Sheeran how to use a loop pedal spoke out to explain how the superstar has been using it, thwarting recently stirred Internet suspicions that Sheeran was “miming” his instrumentals over a backing track.
Gary Dunne, a struggling musician at the time he met Sheeran, was asked to play his 15th birthday party after Sheeran saw him perform and “loved the looping.” After the party, Dunne and Sheeran “stayed up late looking at live looping and the basics of how to use it.”
Looping is a craft that takes extensive practice to perfect. “If he pushes a button a half second out, the whole song can fall out of sync,” explains Dunne to BBC's Newsbeat. “So he's up there on his own, and he's riding a wave of being in the moment with the music. And every time he puts his foot down, he's either recording or looping or reversing or adjusting a track.”
Sheeran took to Twitter to further explain, asking people to “please Google” looping before jumping to other conclusions.
You can check out Sheeran’s loop-heavy performance of “Shape of You” at this year’s Grammys below, as well as a Sheeran performance from the Paste Cloud below that.