Ed Sheeran has revealed Jay-Z once turned down a guest verse on Shape of You.
While speaking to Rolling Stone for his March cover story, the Shape of You singer remembered he originally asked the rapper to collaborate with him on his 2017 hit.
“We were in touch,” Ed told the outlet. “I sent him the song, and he said, ‘I don’t think the song needs a rap verse.’ He was probably right.”
He praised Jay-Z, “He’s got a very, very good ear,” adding that he “usually gets things right”.
The singer also clarified, “It was a very natural, respectful pass.”
Shape of You was released as a lead single on Ed’s third studio album, Divide. It spent 12 weeks on the Billboard Hot 100’s top spot, and earned a Grammy for best pop solo performance.
Elsewhere in the interview, Ed commented on his 2019 collaboration with Bruno Mars and Chris Stapleton, Blow.
“I feel like when people saw Ed Sheeran and Bruno Mars, they were like, ‘Oh, that’ll sound a (certain way),’” he said of the rock song. “It was so not that. At some point, someone will come across it, and it will be put in a superhero movie or something.”