The 26-year-old tunesmith released ÷ (divide) on Friday (03Mar17), with the album expected to post huge sales and break streaming records.

In order to help sales along, the British singer-songwriter took a turn behind the cash desk at the HMV Oxford Street shop in London, even getting his own HMV name badge.

The Thinking Out Loud singer looked happy with the attention he received from lucky fans while in the store, but he hasn't always been as at ease with his global fame.

In 2015 he announced to fans he would be taking a year off from music and social media to travel and enjoy life away from the spotlight, while in a new interview with British newspaper The Sun, he reveals that he struggled to cope with the pressures of fame and became a recluse.

"I stayed inside for four months. I just ordered food in and watched movies," he explains. "I couldn't go out and get a pint of milk. I always wanted to maintain normality - being able to go to the pub or go do a gig.

"I just stopped going out - instead I was ordering takeaways and putting on a lot of weight. I hadn't got any balance, so I just stayed inside."

Talking about his decision to seek the quiet life by quitting social media, he adds, "That stops you from going mental when you actually realise it's not that bad. It's a very unnatural position to be in.

"I think I have adjusted and I now know how to play it. Look at someone like Adele, she has definitely adjusted to it. You just have to. But I had a two-year period which was quite a weird time."

Divide's two lead singles Shape of You and Castle on the Hill have both stormed the U.K. charts, with Shape of You thought likely to remain as Britain's number one for an eighth consecutive week when a new chart rundown is announced on Friday (03Mar17).