An ultra-rare Ed Sheeran demo recorded when the singer was only 13 and funded by his busking jaunt in Galway is up for auction and may fetch between £5,000 and £10,000.
The singer released his debut album + in 2001 but he wrote and recorded his first official collection of original songs, a home-produced CD called Spinning Man, many years before he became one of the biggest pop singers in the world.
Writing in his book, Ed Sheeran: A Virtual Journey, he said, 'There are probably 20 copies of Spinning Man in existence, and I have 19 of them. I don't want anyone else to get hold of a copy."
However, one copy is now up for auction, with bids starting at £2,500, but expected to go up to £5,000 to £10,000.
According to reports, Sheeran was staying with relatives and gave the collection to a friend of the family, who recently discovered it in a drawer.
Speaking to PA, the owner's brother, whose name is Kevin, said, "My brother put it in a drawer and forgot about it. At the time Ed Sheeran was this just this wee, ginger-haired busker and he thought nothing of it. He didn’t realise he would go on to be one of the world’s biggest pop stars."
According to the listing, the copy of the demo was "Originally owned by the vendor's relative, who worked in the music industry in Dublin, and who was given the CD personally by Ed Sheeran in 2009.
The demo was named after a painting owned by Sheeran’s dad and the songs are about the young Ed’s first experience of heartbreak over a girl called Claire, with song titles including Moody Ballad of Ed, I Love You, No More War and Addicted.
"I burnt the CDs myself and made the covers," Sheeran said in his book. "There were 14 songs, and they were all songs that rhymed. One lyric went: "I’m a typical average teen if you know what I mean".
The liner notes of the demo list his influences as 'Damien Rice, Eric Clapton and Jimmy H', and he also thanks 'all those who put money into my guitar case in Galway when I busked there last summer, that helped!'
'I hope young people can get into my stuff and find something which they can identify with," he added. "This is the first collection of tracks I've done and I'm really looking forward to playing them live in concert."