In a new interview with The Breakfast Club, the singer discussed why he doesn’t feel accepted by the pop world. “I’m not accepted by my genre. I thought it was quite telling that my album came out and the only people that emailed me in-depth about liking it were like Dave and Stormzy and people from the UK rap and UK grime scene. My peers largely, I feel, in the pop scene often don’t want me to succeed. … I’ve never felt accepted by my scene,” he said.
Elsewhere in the interview, when asked by Charlamagne tha God who Sheeran would want to write for, he immediately answered Rihanna.
“Rihanna is always the benchmark,” Sheeran said. “That’s how ‘Shape of You’ was created, that’s how ‘Love Yourself’ with Justin Bieber was created. … She’s got such great taste in songs … You can’t say what Rihanna’s style is—it’s just good tunes. So when you go in the studio to create a song, always we go, ‘What would Rihanna do?’ So she would be someone I’d always love to work with, and write with or for.”
Watch Sheeran’s entire Breakfast Club episode below.