Entertainment Features

East Comes West to Pay Tribute to Ed Sheeran

East Comes West to Pay Tribute to Ed Sheeran

By David DeRocco                            dave@gobeweekly.com  https://twitter.com/?lang=en 

When the clock turned on the new millennium, Edward Christopher Sheeran was just a wee nine-year-old lad living out a rather obscure life in West Yorkshire, England. And so it’s really rather remarkable that the mop-topped ginger has, in very short order, become one of the top-selling artists of the 21st century, racking up sales of over 150 million records with just four albums, including 10 top 10 singles from just one album!

It’s no surprise then that Sheeran has already spawned passionate tribute acts, including the one heading into Niagara Falls’ Seneca Queen Theatre Thursday, January 30th. DANIEL EAST – UK's TRIBUTE TO ED SHEERAN promises to deliver the ultimate experience for Ed Sheeran fans

“It suits me, it suits my voice,” explains East, the enterprising Englishman tasked with delivering the one-man salute to Sheeran. “His music is a little bit different. It’s not quite as hard core as the music of the 70s and 80s. But it does appeal to a wide variety of musical tastes.”

East first started singing Sheeran’s songs around 2014, and was quickly spotted by an agent who suggested he develop the tribute. East went about researching the artist, incorporating the signature hair colour and tight-sleeved T-shirts preferred by Sheeran while piecing together and perfecting his tribute. And like many of Sheeran’s fans, East finds it easy to explain the artist’s massive international appeal.

“Ed Sheeran songs are great,” says East, whose favourite memory of his one boyhood trip to Canada was watching a lady drop her camera into the Niagara River while snapping pictures on the Maid of the Mist. “The lyrics are so clever, and the amount of songs he’s written includes songs for One Direction, Rhiannon, Beyonce. His talent is amazing.”

East works without the benefit of backing tracks, choosing instead to utilize the loop pedal that Sheeran uses to deliver an authentic performance. That also means singing all the hits. including “Castle on the Hill,” “Perfect,” “Shape of You,” “Thinking Out Loud,” “Photograph” and East’s personal favouite, “Bloodstream.” He also strives to create an intimate bond with the audience, since the show is void of the typical excess of large-scale concert performances.

“The music isn’t heavy rock and roll, so you’re not going to be head-banging to it,” said East, who finally got to see Sheeran live in Paris last year. “I do things similar to what Ed Sheeran does. There’s the interaction of what he says before songs. I get the audience clapping along, maybe shining a light in the air, waving the hands. It’s all about the songs, and when you’re doing this show it’s hard to pick which songs are best to do because they’re all amazing.”

The show at the Seneca is part of East’s first real tour of Canada with the tribute, but he does hope to return later in the year – perhaps when the weather is a little less “Canadian” then it is in January.

“It’s all fun,” laughed East. “To be honest, we could have probably chosen a better time of the year. But it’s all part of the experience.”

Get your tickets to see Daniel East at the Seneca Box Office.


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