Ed Sheeran Celebrates the Anniversary of His Album “Divide” and Gives Rihanna a Shout Out for Inspiring 'Shape of You'

The British artist's smash hit album '÷' celebrated its seventh anniversary on March 3

<p> Lester Cohen/Getty</p> Ed Sheeran and Rihanna at the Grammys in Los Angeles in February 2017

Lester Cohen/Getty

Ed Sheeran and Rihanna at the Grammys in Los Angeles in February 2017

Ed Sheeran is looking back on one of his most beloved albums as it celebrates an anniversary.

The singer-songwriters’ third studio album ÷ (pronounced Divide) turned seven on Sunday and to commemorate the milestone, he shared a handful of photos from the record’s creation and around the time of its release on Instagram. Among the throwbacks, he even gave Rihanna a thoughtful shout-out, as she helped to inspire the smash hit single “Shape of You.”

Sheeran’s carousel of shots began with a fun photo of him and the superstar, 36, at the 2017 Grammys. The two appeared to be all smiles, with the “Work” singer grinning especially wide.

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“At the Grammys telling Rihanna 'Shape of You' was originally with her in mind,” he wrote in the caption, which included descriptions of each image he posted.

Upon the release of the song, which is an ode to Sheeran’s wife Cherry Seaborn, he revealed that it was originally written for the Barbados artist.

In a 2017 BBC Radio 1 Breakfast Show interview, he said the track came together somewhat randomly because he was working with co-writers. “We were writing this song and I was like, ‘This would really work for Rihanna,'” he shared at the time. “And then I started singing lyrics like, ‘Putting Van the Man on the jukebox,’ and I was like, ‘Well, she’s not really going to sing that, is she?’ And then we sort of decided halfway through that we were just going to make it for me.”

<p>Francis Specker/CBS via Getty </p> Ed Sheeran at the Grammys in Los Angeles in February 2024

Francis Specker/CBS via Getty

Ed Sheeran at the Grammys in Los Angeles in February 2024

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The British star reflected a great deal on the success of “Shape of You” in his “anniversary throwback dumpington.”

He also included a shot of him and dancer Jennie Pegouskie, whom he starred alongside in the music video for the track, and one with some of the song’s co-writers, Johnny McDaid of Snow Patrol and Steve Mac. In the latter, the three posed together while Sheeran held up a bottle of champagne to honor the fan-favorite going No. 1 on the charts.

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“Celebrating with @rokstoneprod and @jmd_snowpatrol Shape of You going #1 worldwide with a bottle of champs we didn’t end up drinking, it’s still in my cellar, being saved for a special occasion,” he wrote.

<p>Karwai Tang/WireImage</p> Ed Sheeran performing at 2022 BRIT Awards in London, England

Karwai Tang/WireImage

Ed Sheeran performing at 2022 BRIT Awards in London, England

The anniversary post also included photos with Damien Hirst, the artist who painted the Divide cover art, U.K. rapper Stormzy and actress Zoey Deutch, who starred in the “Perfect” music video, among other shots.

The Grammy winner opened up about some of his favorite memories from the Divide tour, as well. “My birthday in Brazil on the Divide tour, I asked to play a football game with some ex Brazilian national players. We got spanked,” he wrote.

Coinciding with the final image of the selection, a candid of Sheeran relaxing in bed with a pizza, he shared: “Final night of the Divide tour, and campaign, in Ipswich, having a pizza and celebrating the most successful era of my career.”

A select number of lucky fans will be able to join in on the anniversary celebrations in a special way.

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The hitmaker also revealed on Instagram that he dropped off a handful of signed Divide vinyls at independent record stores around Jakarta, Indonesia. as he’s currently playing shows across Asia. He posted a fun video documenting his surprise visits (and capturing him trying on sunglasses, checking out an album from an Indonesian band and purchasing a Britney Spears t-shirt along the way).

“years of Divide today, time flies eh,” the “Photograph” singer wrote in the caption. “To celebrate I went to some indie record stores in Jakarta and hid some signed vinyls in them, and tried on some sunnies, too jazzy?”

Divide debuted at No. 1 on the Billboard 200 and sparked two No. 1 hits on the Billboard Hot 100 with “Perfect” and “Shape of You,” which spent 12 weeks in the peak spot. The project went on to win the Grammy for best pop vocal album, while “Shape of You” took home the trophy for best pop solo performance.

Still today, the LP remains one of the most streamed albums of all time on Spotify, second only to Bad Bunny’s Un Verano Sin Ti.

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