On this day in 2014, Ed Sheeran released x, his second studio album, and the rest is history.

There’s a possibility you may have heard several tracks from the album over the years, particularly “Photograph”, “Sing”, and “Thinking Out Loud”, all of which enthralled seemingly the entire world for what seemed like a decade.

Initially releasing to positive reviews, x would debut at #1 in the UK, and would eventually go 4x Platinum in the US, solidifying Sheeran’s status as one of the biggest commercial artists of his era, ranking alongside names like Taylor Swift, Sam Smith, and Ariana Grande.

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Working closely with icons like Pharrell Williams and Rick Rubin, Sheeran’s album was bound for success from the beginning. At the time, the English singer-songwriter was already commercially successful and a rising global star, but his emotive lyrics and technical skill as a musician on x saw his popularity rise to unprecedented new levels.

Featuring deeply personal cuts like “Afire Love” and “Nina” to radio smash hits like “Don’t”, x instantly became one of the most notable pop albums of the 2010s and the 21st century.

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It peaked at #1 in 15 countries, including in Australia and New Zealand. Another album track, “Sing”, became Sheeran’s first UK #1 song, and it was clear that the Ed mania was well underway, with his following album ÷only cementing his pop legacy even further.

Embarking on a world tour, Sheeran sold out arenas across Europe, Asia, Australia, and New Zealand, before releasing a special Wembley Edition of in November 2015.

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Since its release 10 years ago, many songs from remain prominent on commercial radio and within pop culture, with beloved hits such as “Thinking Out Loud” proving to be timeless, including becoming the song that apparently everybody gets married to.

Sheeran has gone on to release five albums since x, including last year’s well received Autumn Variations, and is still one of the biggest commercial artists on the planet. In 2023, he broke Australian records when 215,000 people were in attendance across his two MCG concerts in March.

Listen to the deluxe edition of x below.

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