Gudinski on Hanging Rock with Ed Sheeran
It’s not often rock impresario Michael Gudinski is left in awe of a performer. Over his decades-long career, Gudinski has seen them come, and he’s seen them go.
But by his own admission, Ed Sheeran is different.
The 25-year-old Brit made a fleeting visit to Oz to promote his new album Divide this week, making appearances on radio and TV as well as a show at the Sydney Opera House, where he showcased new and old material, including Shape of You and Castle on the Hill.
But it was a ‘secret’ show for the Hit Network at Victoria’s Hanging Rock that left Gudinksi in awe.
Only 80 lucky fans were invited to the network’s signature World Famous Rooftop, unaware that the location had shifted 69ks north to a pile of rocks made famous by Peter Weir’s Picnic.
Sheeran had visited the landmark with Gudinski during his much talked about ‘hiatus’ last year and fell in love with Hanging Rock, despite a fear of heights.
The announcement was made by mega-fans Hamish and Andy, who managed to sneak in a selfie as the singer took to the volcanic stage.
Talking to Radio Today, Gudinski said, “I’ve always had this idea to do something unique, original and surprising. I mean, we had the show at the Opera House – and that’s an iconic location in itself, but Hanging Rock is something very different.
“We’ve had people play at the bottom of the Rock; Bruce Springsteen, Jimmy Barnes and Leonard Cohen, but this was the first time we had someone play ON the rock”.
Melbourne’s notorious weather almost threw a spanner in the works. After a week of glorious weather, the heavens opened up, and it was pouring.
“But with the weather, we did have an alternative venue ready to go. But then this window opened, and he [Sheeran] was on.
“He was backlit in blue, and it was magical. And then when he did Castle on the Hill, it was amazing. I mean, U2 put Red Rocks on the map, and I think this will do the same for Hanging Rock.
“The kid’s only 25, and he’s such a great singer. And to think he can perform solo to a stadium audience! It takes a lot to inspire me, and he’s got it”.
Last month, Sheeran made history by becoming the first artist to simultaneously hold down the top two spots on the ARIA Charts. His new album Divide will hit retail on Friday 7 March.