Breakout British singer Ed Sheeran is in the midst of an MTV invasion with Nine Days and Nights of Ed Sheeran. Although the special will answer at least 101 viewers’ questions about Taylor Swift’s favorite collaborator, one touchy subject he may not address is whether he was singing from personal experience in his 2012 single “Small Bump.”
In the touching song, then 21-year-old Ed began by daydreaming about fatherhood.
You’re just a small bump I know
You’ll grow into your skin
With a smile like hers
And a dimple beneath your chin
Finger nails the size of a half grain of rice
And eyelids closed ’till they soon opened wide a small bump
In four months you’ll open your eyes
Sadly, by the final verse, it’s apparent the mother suffered a miscarriage.
Cause you were just a small bump unborn
For four months then torn from life
Maybe you were needed up there
But we’re still unaware as why
The appropriately somber music video revolved around Ed sitting in a hospital waiting room while awaiting news about the mother of his child.
Because Ed was singing in the first person and starred in the music video, many assumed he was speaking from personal experience — similar to when Ben Folds opened up about his high-school girlfriend’s abortion in 1997’s “Brick.” However, Ed later clarified to Interview Magazine that the song was about a close friend’s miscarriage when she was five-months pregnant with another man’s baby.
“It was quite a difficult subject to tackle. I wrote it from their perspective. It was my perspective looking on them to begin with. It’s quite a touchy subject, so I wrote it from the perspective of actually being the parent,” he explained.
Ed added that, although he appreciates a good love song as much as anyone else, he aims to “mix it up a little bit.”
“The public has heard the stereotypical love songs a million times and they’ve heard the stereotypical life-or-death songs millions of times,” he said of brainstorming for his debut album, x. “That’s why the different subject matters and love songs on the album are a bit odd and have some rapping things in it and popular culture references.”
Nine Days and Nights of Ed Sheeran premieres on MTV tonight at 11/10c.