Ed Sheeran was advised to dye his hair if he wanted to be a star.

The 29-year-old singer may be known for his ginger locks, but his first management company suggested he'd have a better image if he coloured his tresses black, and also told him to overhaul his music by ditching his trademark loop pedal and dropping raps from his songs.

Manager Stuart Camp, who guided Ed's rise to fame after taking over from his previous team in 2011, said: "The other management ac­tually resigned from him because they said he wasn’t going anywhere.

“He had to drop the looping pedal, dye his hair black and give up the rapping.”

The 'Shape of You' hitmaker is currently taking a break from music after he and his wife Cherry Seaborn recently welcomed daughter Lyra into the world, but Stuart revealed that not only will Ed be back in a year with a new album, he's already planning ahead for the future.

Speaking on the 'Straight Up' podcast, he said: "“We’ve started recording now. We’ll probably put a record out this time next year.

“I’m looking at a piece of paper that actually has the tracklisting for the album after the next one on it.

“He’s always one or two albums ahead.”

Ed has previously admitted he was bullied over his ginger hair but eventually embraced his "quirky" appearance and realised his tresses were what helped him stand out in a crowd.

Asked if he felt he was different at school, Ed replied: "Well yeah because I was ginger so I was instantly ripped into from the day I started school.

"Ginger, had a stutter, wore huge glasses, just a bit odd, but then as I got older I kind of loved it.

"I have always looked a little bit quirky and I never had much luck with girls it was always like I looked a bit weird and then when I started playing music every time I would do a gig everyone was like , 'Oh it's the ginger guy with the small guitar' and you get remembered for that.

"And then suddenly you start gaining a bit of attraction because you are memorable. The thing I always say to kids now is it's great to be weird."