Ed Sheeran performed ‘What Do I Know?’ on Comic Relief on Friday, while imploring viewers to call in and donate to the charity.
The track is taken from his recent album ‘÷’, which became the third-fastest selling album in UK chart history earlier this month. “While you’re watching this song, if you can pick up the phone and donate anything you can, that’d be great,” said Sheeran.
Shortly after the performance, Sheeran and Inbetweeners star Greg Davies kissed. Mirada Hart, hosting at the time with comedian Rob Beckett, said Comic Relief rules stated Sheeran had to kiss the tallest host on the evening. At that moment, Davies, taller than Hart, returned to the stage, saying he hoped Sheeran was wearing lip balm.
The singer had previously paired up with the cast of People Just Do Nothing to create two special videos for the song which saw Sheeran, or ‘Ed Shearer’ and the DJs of Kurupt FM superimposed onto the backs of elephants, onto the side of helicopters, in African villages, and on the steps of their own private jumbo jet.
Sheeran didn’t just ask for money, either. During his visit to Liberia, he encountered a young boy who had been beaten by an older man. Visibly shaken, Sheeran decided he would pay for the boy and his friends to be housed and schooled until better arrangements could be made.
“It doesn’t matter how much it costs,” Sheeran said on the film. “I don’t think we should leave until that’s sorted.”
Documenting his trip for the BBC, he wrote: “There are hundreds of thousands of people crammed in to West Point, most of them living in squalor, so getting an education is a privilege and not something all of the kids get to do.
“As we were taking a break from filming, a little girl came over to talk to me. Her name was Peaches and unlike the other children I’d met, she wasn’t in a uniform. She explained that since her father’s death during the Ebola crisis, her mother couldn’t afford to send her to school any more.
“We had an impromptu jamming session and the girl could really sing. Peaches sang a song that reminded her of her father and as she did, tears started to roll down her face. The enthusiasm that was initially shining out of her disappeared.