Cat Cohen's Anatomy of a Hit a Hit in 2017

Castle On The Hill by Ed Sheeran

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Castle On The Hill” is a skillfully written, imagery laden, and powerfully sung folk-pop ode to coming of age in the English countryside.

Song: Castle On The Hill
Artist: Ed Sheeran
Album: Divide
Songwriter: Ed Sheeran, Benjamin Levin
Producer: Ed Sheeran, Benny Bianco
B01MY72DNS

Concept
A nostalgic return to the joys, trials, and tribulations of one’s teenage years and group of friends.

Lyric
A haunting depiction of Sheeran’s childhood and adolescent adventures with his friends and his early romantic experiences. When I was six years old I broke my leg I was running from my brother and his friends And tasted the sweet perfume of the mountain grass I rolled down I was younger then, take me back to when I Found my heart and broke it here Made friends and lost them through the years And I've not seen the roaring fields in so long, I know I've grown But I can't wait to go home I'm on my way Driving at ninety down those country lanes Singing to "Tiny Dancer" And I miss the way you make me feel, and it's real We watched the sunset over the castle on the hill

Groove
An intense uptempo 16th guitar groove in the U2 and Mumford and Sons tradition.

Melody
An unusual memorable 3-section melody in a bright 7-tone major scale with accented dissonant tones to give it a darker edge. Each section is distinctive and the range is dramatically well over an octave.

Harmony
The use of implied I IV I V harmony is abstracted by subtle guitar and bass non-chordal tones with an unchanging pedal point on top. This gives the recording an eerie contemporary sound.

Structure
Signature Verse Pre-chorus Chorus Verse Pre-chorus Chorus Breakdown Verse Pre-Chorus Chorus Tag Sig ABC ABC Breakdown ABC Tag

Signature
Intense guitar strum that is used throughout the song.

Production
Intensely spirited and meticulously crafted in a way that matches the bittersweet high-energy images of the singer's youthful experiences.

Performance
Sheeran sings with passion, conviction, and amazing range that highlights his emotional journey to the past.

Predicted Longevity
“Castle On The Hill” is a uniquely contemporary recording that grows on the listener with repeated plays. This well-written and delivered song has such evocative music and lyrics, it should have appeal for years to come. A certain Grammy contender, if not winner. 5 stars on the “Cat Scale” from 1 to 5.

Album Cover: Divide

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