The first music from ed Sheeran’s upcoming 2023 album is a heart-wrenching lullaby for a friend who’s gone but never forgotten. Keeping his “Eyes Closed” is the only way the singer can reconnect with his friend now.
Ed Sheeran announced the next edition of his mathematical function album series ‘-‘ or ‘Subtract’ as an “opening the trapdoor into my soul” and that “For the first time, I’m not trying to craft an album people will like, I’m merely putting something out that’s honest and true to where I am in my adult life.” ‘Subtract’ follows Ed Sheeran’s 2021 project ‘=’ or ‘Equals.’
In a Facebook post announcing the album, Ed Sheeran also mentioned the inspiration for “Eyes Closed,” “My bestfriend, Jamal, a brother to me, died suddenly.” Covid lockdowns, the passing of his best friend, and discovering that his wife has a tumor amongst other things did seem to have piled up on the singer in the last few years. In an interview with BBC, Ed Sheeran admitted that he has been battling with depression all his life, but 2022 really kicked it up a notch and there were times he felt like ending it all.
Jamal Edwards passed away in February 2022 from a heart attack induced by the consumption of a mix of cocaine and alcohol. In the same interview, Ed Sheeran professed that he would not touch drugs ever again, and if he did “that’s just disrespectful to his memory to even.”
Listen to “Eyes Closed” by Ed Sheeran
Buy ‘- (Subtract)’ Album on Apple Music and Amazon
Ed Sheeran “Eyes Closed” Lyrics Meaning and Song Review
Throughout the song, we find the singer being down and depressed–maybe rightly so. It has been a difficult few years, dealing with the card life has dealt you.
One might think that being one of the biggest celebrities would help him in some way to face the same odds everyone else does. However, no amount of money and fame can buy you a best friend. No amount of money could help do the surgery on his wife’s tumor while she was expecting. There are some curveballs in life that are unplayable, no matter how good you are or how good you have it.
As a frequent booze user, Ed Sheeran would have turned to alcohol to face these problems. It does not solve any of your problems. But it does help you numb your senses for a while. It also helps him shake off his shyness to dance in the bar, eyes closed, imagining his friend was with him.
The colours are more than blue
But I lost more than my friend
The color blue is often associated with feelings such as sadness, depression, loneliness, and stillness. On TikTok, Ed Sheeran explained that blue was Jamal’s color, so Jamal would have been able to bring about a new meaning to this color. And now that he is gone, the singer truly feels what it’s like to be blue.
While he dances away the night at an empty bar, a certain sound, voice, or noise, suddenly snaps him back to reality and reminds him of his friend. He opens his eyes in a sudden rush of excitement only to realize that his head is getting the best of him. He goes back to his trance, eyes closed.
Let us hear what you think about this song in the comments below. Read the complete lyrics to the song on Genius.