When Ed Sheeran Makes Songs, He Asks Himself, ‘What Would Rihanna Do?’

Ed Sheeran has earned himself a lot of clout over the course of his career, as evidenced by the list of folks he’s worked with. While a lot of aspiring artists look up to him for inspiration, his musical role model is Rihanna, as he revealed on The Breakfast Club recently.

In fact, he says that when he’s in the studio, he thinks about what Rihanna would do. He said, “Rihanna is always the benchmark. Rihanna is always… when I go in, that’s how ‘Shape Of You’ was created, ‘Love Yourself’ with Justin Bieber was created. She’s got such great taste in songs that… you can’t say what Rihanna’s style is. It’s just good tunes. So when you go in the studio to create a song, always we go, ‘What would Rihanna do?’ So she’s be somebody I’d always love to work with and write with or for. The fact that she can do ‘Work’ and then she just does ‘FourFiveSeconds,’ and they’re both totally different but both f*cking incredible tunes.”

He also noted they hoped to link up on his No. 6 Collaborations Project album, but they didn’t have “the right tune.” He explained why that didn’t discourage him, saying, “I submitted songs to Beyoncé before and she hadn’t picked any, but then I did ‘Perfect’ and she wanted to sing on it. So I know people rate me, but sometimes the songs aren’t the right songs.”