The much-anticipated official video for Ed Sheeran's latest single, Galway Girl, has been released, and it shows the vibrant Irish county off to its best advantage. Galway city takes a starring role in the video, which also features Hollywood star, Saoirse Ronan, and a host of Irish celebrities.
The video was filmed by the singer himself, and it begins at the end of his sold-out concert at Dublin's 3Arena. He heads O'Connell's Bar on Eyre Square, where he bumps into Irish comedians Tommy Tiernan and Hector Ó hEochagáin in the men's bathroom. Then he meets Saoirse Ronan - his Galway Girl - and they head to O'Connor's Bar in Salthill.
While at the bar, they play darts, but Ed throws a stray dart that sticks into the menacing Fran from the Irish crime series, Love/Hate, aka actor Peter Coonan. He and Saoirse run off through the colourful streets of Galway, where they encounter lots of fans and Saoirse dances with a troupe of Irish dancers on the street.
Ed then gets his now infamous 'Galway Grill' tattoo from tattoo artist Brian Power - prankster Saoirse wrote the wrong word down as a joke. Then they move to a lively trad session in The Nest, where Saoirse drinks a pint of Guinness and Ed manages to spill his pint over his old nemesis Fran, who punches him to the ground. After he recovers, Ed and Saoirse return home and look out over the city.
Ed thanks Galway, which has been designated the European Capital of Culture 2020, at the end of the video. Millions of people have already seen it, and many believe it will benefit Galway by catapulting it on to a global stage. The city's lively, fun side comes across brilliantly in the video, and it looks amazingly scenic and teeming with life, music and colour.
“Given Ed’s global profile and popularity and Saoirse’s own international celebrity, this new video will provide great exposure for Galway," Fiona Monaghan, Fáilte Ireland’s head of the Wild Atlantic Way, told Lonely Planet. "Hopefully it will raise the profile and prompt increased interest and more visitors to the city and county.”