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Ed Sheeran paid tribute to Jamal Edwards in a heartfelt Instagram post on Wednesday.
Music mogul Jamal, who launched a string of UK music acts to stardom, including Ed, died on Sunday at the age of 31 following a ‘short illness’.
The SBTV founder gained fame after setting up the new music platform in 2006 by uploading clips of his friends performing rap music.
‘I’m so grateful to have existed within his orbit’: Ed Sheeran paid tribute to Jamal Edwards in a heartfelt post on Wednesday following the music mogul’s sudden death at age 31
Expressing his upset, Ed, 31, described Jamal as his ‘brother’, noting that he ‘would not be here’ without the music mogul’s help and guidance.
Alongside a throwback image of the pair, Ed penned: ‘I haven’t posted anything coz I can’t find the words, I can’t reply coz I don’t know what to say.
‘Jamal is my brother. His light shone so bright. He only used it to illuminate others and never asked for anything in return.
‘A stars light shines for millions of years after they go, and his will continue to light up every dark moment, we are all witnessing his power.
‘I would not be here without him, professionally and personally. There will never be anything close to what he is, but I’m so grateful to have existed within his orbit. My brother, come on. [sic]’
Last post: Jamal wished Ed a happy birthday from Marbella, Spain, on Friday. His death aged 31 has been put down to a sudden illness
Ed and his wife Cherry, 29, are believed to have paid their respects to the entrepreneur by laying flowers next to a mural of him on Acton High Street, west London, on Tuesday.
An onlooker told The Sun: ‘Ed and Cherry went to pay their respects on Tuesday night.
‘He kept a low profile and no one bothered him. After all Jamal did at the start of his career it was important for him to be there.’
Paying their respects: Ed and his wife Cherry Seaborn, 29, are believed to have laid flowers next to a mural of Jamal Edwards on Acton High Street, west London, on Tuesday
Superstar: Jamal was credited with helping to launch a string of UK music acts to stardom, including Ed Sheeran (both pictured), Dave and Jessie J
The onlooker claimed the couple stayed for around 15 minutes before Ed went to see Jamal’s mother, Loose Woman panellist Brenda Edwards.
Jamal’s final Instagram post before his death was a tribute to his ‘life brother’ Sheeran.
He wished his friend a happy birthday three days ago, sharing a picture of the friends together, captioned Marbella, Spain.
He wrote: ‘Happy Birthday to the OG, Ed. Blessed to have you in my life brother.
Tributes: Crowds of fans gathered at a candlelit vigil in West London on Monday to pay tribute to music mogul Jamal Edwards following his sudden death. Above: The crowds on Acton high street
‘#You know you’ve been mates a long time when you lose count on the years! Keep smashing it & inspiring us all G!’
Hundreds of mourners lined the streets on Monday evening next to the mural of Edwards, which is located in his hometown of Acton.
Jamal’s sudden death was announced online on Sunday and later confirmed by his management.
A statement by his mother, Brenda was read out on Loose Women on Monday stating that he had died on Sunday morning following a ‘sudden illness’ and that his family and friends are ‘completely devastated’.
She added: ‘Jamal was an inspiration to myself and so many. Our love for him lives on, his legacy lives on.’
Viral: A young Ed Sheeran appears on SBTV in 2010 in a clip that now has 11m views on YouTube alone
At Monday’s vigil, Brenda sang the Whitney Houston hit Greatest Love of All to hushed crowds who gathered to remember the music impresario’s life.
Singing through a megaphone last night, she sang the words ‘I believe the children are the future. Learning to love yourself – it is the greatest love of all’, reducing the crowd to tears.
In another poignant moment, after finishing her song, Brenda addressed the mourners and said she hoped that her son’s death would help unite their community.
She said: ‘If we can do anything in 2022, can we please bring the community together. Stop the fighting. Stop the killing. And build up our community. We are not supposed to be losing our young people. If you see something happening.
‘Try to stop it please’. Police have confirmed there is no suggestion that violence played a part in Jamal’s death, describing it as a non-suspicious ‘medical emergency’.
Fame: The SBTV founder gained fame after setting up the music platform in 2006 by uploading clips of his friends performing rap music. He was awarded an MBE at Buckingham Palace in 2015
Brenda, a Loose Women panellist who finished fourth in the second series of The X Factor, is mourning her son’s death with his sister Tanisha.
Friends told MailOnline yesterday they believe he had suffered a ‘sudden’ cardiac arrest after a night DJing in the West End.
Dwayne, who attended Acton High School with him told MailOnline: ‘The details are still a still not clear but we’ve been told that it was a heart attack.
‘He was out DJing on Saturday night and eventually got home in the early hours of Sunday morning. The family are still trying to come to terms with it all, but we’ve heard that his mum found him in his bedroom and called an ambulance.’
Another friend added: ‘Jamal lives with his mum and came home late after DJing on Saturday night.
‘We’ve heard from relatives that he had a sudden heart attack but what caused it, I just don’t know. I saw him a couple of days ago and he was absolutely fine, laughing and joking.’
Heartbreaking: Jamal’s mother Brenda Edwards (pictured together on the show in November 2021), said she and his family and friends are all devastated
Jerry, another friend said: ‘Jamal is a legend in this part of West London, and this has hit us all really hard. For him to go so suddenly in the prime of his life, when he was doing so much is truly shocking.’
London Ambulance Service confirmed they were called to a house at 9.34am on Sunday and two paramedics in fast response cars and an advanced paramedic in critical care.
How Jamal Edwards launched the careers of some of Britain’s biggest stars from a YouTube channel set up in his bedroom when he was 15 and working in Topman
Little Mix on SBTV in 2012
Jamal was 15 when his mother Brenda bought him extra special Christmas present – a £200 video camera.
YouTube had just been launched and Jamal, who like most teenagers spent hours in his bedroom online, decided to upload some footage of foxes in his back garden. ‘I thought I was Steve Irwin,’ he said in an interview with MailOnline.
But when the footage got 1,000 views, he realised he was on to something.
He went out on to the estate and made some clips of his friends, most of whom were into grime – the music style now defined by stars such as Dizzee Rascal and Skepta.
‘Back then, there was no place to showcase our sort of spitting and rapping, so I thought, OK, I want to create that platform,’ he said. He took his own rap moniker ‘Smokey Barz’ to coin his brand name and SBTV was born.
Jamal was not an overnight success, and Brenda had no idea that her son would be hailed as a 21st-century pioneer.
From her vantage point, she had a boy who had struggled at school, was being threatened with expulsion from his college and needed a reality check about the world of work.
When he was 17, Brenda marched him into a branch of Topman and demanded that they give him a job.
‘It was so embarrassing. They were saying, ‘We don’t have any jobs going,’ but she wouldn’t take no for an answer,’ he says. ‘She said, ‘I don’t care, he’ll work for free, you have to take him on.’ And they agreed, probably because they wanted to get rid of her.’
Jamal began his Topman career as a shop assistant but at the same time started hanging out at the BBC, sneaking into raves and messaging record labels to beg for interview time with their artists. His big break came three years later when he secured his first non-grime interview with Kelly Rowland.
From that, Bruno Mars, Nicki Minaj, Trey Songz and countless other A-listers followed. In 2011, he was invited to 10 Downing Street to interview the prime minister after being appointed a Spirit of London Awards ambassador.
Jamal was still hands-on with both filming and editing at SBTV, and had big plans to expand the brand into sport, comedy and fashion.
Away from work his great passion was Chelsea FC.
The Metropolitan Police have said they were called to the family home at just before 10.30am on Sunday.
His sudden death is being treated as non-suspicious but unexplained, meaning it will likely be referred to the coroner for an inquest into the cause of his death.
‘Police were called by the London Ambulance Service’, a Scotland Yard spokesman said, adding: ‘A 31-year-old man had suffered a medical emergency and had been pronounced dead at the scene.
‘Officers attended and determined that the circumstances were not suspicious. The man’s death is being treated as unexplained.’
Meanwhile, the hosts of Loose Women broke down live on air as they described their grief after the death of the DJ – who was the son of their co-star Brenda Edwards.
Charlene White’s voice cracked and Judi Love wiped away tears as they described visiting her at her home yesterday, hours after his death was announced.
In an emotional Loose Women show dedicated to Edwards, Ms White opened the show by saying: ‘Brenda had so much love for both Jamal and her daughter Tanisha. Her heart is full of love for them.
‘So you’ll know just how shocked Brenda is, and just how hard it has hit those who knew him and of course all of us who love Brenda.’
She added: ‘It’s hit us hard. Judi has joined us on the panel because we want to do Brenda proud. You and I were with her last night.’
Describing Edwards as a ‘powerhouse’ who changed the UK music scene, White added: ‘But what people have to understand is there is work life and there is family life and there is home life – and it should have been Brenda who was able to choose when she wanted the world to know about her loss and that was taken away from her.’
Judi Love said: ‘If I’m honest I don’t want to be here doing this but we have to. It’s heartbreaking. All we can do is try and do our best to support Brenda and honour her amazing son. We just wanted to be there for her yesterday’.
In a tribute from the Prince of Wales and the Duchess of Cornwall, Clarence House tweeted: ‘Thinking of the family of Jamal Edwards today.
‘His work in music but also as an ambassador for a new generation, including his work for The Prince’s Trust, were an inspiration to so many.’
It comes after figures from the world of music paid tribute to Edwards, including Dave and Jessie J, whose careers he is credited with helping to launch.
Dave shared a photo of Edwards to Twitter and wrote ‘Thank you for everything words can’t explain’.
While Jessie J said in a post on Instagram: ‘Your light. Your ideas. Your work ethic. Your laugh. Your care for every person you met was unmatched.
‘But your friendship. Phew. That’s why my heart is broken. We had plans bro. I can’t believe this is real. I love you @jamaledwards.’
The Price Tag singer also shared clips of her and Edwards appearing on Channel 4 series Gogglebox together and a screenshot of a text exchange in which she told the music entrepreneur, ‘Miss you’.
The YouTube star had performed at Bubba Oasis social club in Angel, north London on Saturday night.
The social club also paid tribute to the music entrepreneur, thanking him for supporting the venue by DJing for them over the weekend despite being ‘constantly in demand’.
They said they were ‘absolutely devastated to hear’ the news and ‘we will miss him forever’.
Owner Rob Huysinga added to MailOnline: ‘We had a great night. Jamal made everybody smile and brought a lot of joy to all of those that were there, as he usually does.
Elba took to Instagram to post a black square with a caption and music mogul Simon Cowell also posted a tribute to Edwards on Twitter
Stars: Jessie J also appeared on SBTV in 2010 and Stormzy first appeared on the YouTube channel in 2012. Both went on to be stars
‘He finished at around 11.30pm and there was absolutely nothing wrong with him. It was just Jamal being his incredible, wonderful self.
‘He had a great, positive energy which all of us felt that night felt it. We are all devastated because of what’s happened, it’s really shocking.’
Edward’s friend, Hollywood star Idris Elba, posted a black square on Instagram and wrote: ‘We lost one @jamaledwards You will be missed little brother.’
Former prime minister David Cameron, now chairman of the National Citizen Service’s Board of Patrons, tweeted: ‘My thoughts & prayers are with the family of Jamal Edwards MBE.
‘He was a great friend to @NCS & a valued Patron, supporting & inspiring young people to be the best they could be, leading from the front & showing what’s possible with hard work & determination. Such a sad loss.’
Tributes: Judi Love wiped away tears on the Loose Women show dedicated to Jamal
Sir Richard Branson, who penned the foreword for Edwards’ 2013 book, Self Belief: The Vision, added: ‘So sad to hear about the passing of Jamal Edwards MBE. What a loss of a truly extraordinary young man who made a huge difference to so many people’s lives.’
The YouTube star launched the careers of scores of young British artists including megastars Ed Sheeran and Stormzy while also dedicating himself to charitable works including with Prince Charles and his sons William and Harry. In 2014, he was awarded an MBE for services to music.
The entrepreneur set up new music platform SB.TV at the age of 15 using a £200 camcorder and a PC in his bedroom in Acton where he lived with his mother Brenda, stepfather Patrick and younger sister Tanisha.
Jamal never knew his father, who was in a brief relationship with his mother when she became pregnant, aged 20.
Royal: Prince of Wales and Jamal during a live session at the launch of the Prince’s Trust Summer Sessions at the Princes’s Trust in Historic Chatham Dockyard in Kent, in 2013
Born in Luton, before moving to West London, he helped to launch a string of UK music careers including Sheeran’s as well as Stormzy, Emeli Sandé, Dave and Jessie J, building a £8million fortune and allowing him to leave the West London estate he grew up on and move to a plush Thames-side apartment.
His online broadcasting company has had more than 200million hits on YouTube. Global entertainment stars such as Snoop Dogg and Dr Dre invited Edwards to join them on their tours, while an advert featuring Edwards as the face of Google Chrome and his extraordinary success had more hits than one with Justin Bieber.
Away from the world of music he was an ambassador for the Prince’s Trust, a charity headed by the Prince of Wales, and in 2014 he was awarded an MBE for his services to music.
Charity: As well as supporting Prince Charles’ charitable works, he also worked with his sons William and Harry (pictured with Radio 1 DJ Gemma Cairney and the princes during the launch of the Queen’s Young Leaders Programme in 2014)
As well as supporting Prince Charles’ charitable works, he also worked with his sons William and Harry.
Edwards had six GCSEs – including three D grades and one E. But thanks to his mother’s insistence, he also has a diploma in moving-image media production from his sixth-form college.
And from this inauspicious start he turned himself into a social-media phenomenon. His online broadcasting company SBTV, which he started in 2006 by uploading clips of his friends performing rap music, has, to date, had more than 200million hits on YouTube.
Edwards recently lived in a Thames-side apartment part of a gated complex just three miles from the Acton estate in West London where he spent his formative years.
Bafta-winning actor writer, director, and producer Adam Deacon, known for his leading role in Kidulthood, said he was ‘heartbroken’ about the death of Edwards.
He said on Twitter: ‘Today I was on set when I found out the tragic news that my good friend Jamal Edwards had passed away and I’m honestly heartbroken.
‘Jamal was one of the nicest, most down to earth and humble men I’ve met in this industry. He always gave me time even when no one else would.
‘He was an inspiration and what he achieved in life was truly remarkable. Thinking of his friends and family at this devastating time. RIP Jamal Edwards.’
Famous faces: Jamal with his friend Rita Ora, who praised the belief he had in her and many other British acts
Charitable: Jamal’s work in music and with charities made him many famous names including Bill Clinton and Cara Delevingne
Model friends: Jamal with Naomi Campbell. They worked together at various events in charity
Musical: Will.i.am and Jamal Edwards attend a private dinner in London
Sporty: Jamal was also football mad, pictured with his Chelsea hero Frank Lampard
Comedian Mo Gilligan, who hosted the Brit Awards earlier this month, called Edwards a ‘truly humble and blessed soul’.
He wrote on Twitter: ‘Your legacy will live on for years & you’ve inspired a whole generation. Rest easy Jamal Edwards.’
Che Wolton Grant, better known by his stage name AJ Tracey, also took to Twitter to vent his grief.
The rapper, singer, songwriter and record producer from Ladbroke Grove, west London, said: ‘RIP Jamal Edwards, West London legend status.’
Throwback: Jamal with his mother Brenda and younger sister Tanisha when they were children
Singer Rita Ora said in an Instagram post that she was devastated at the news, writing: ‘My first ever interview was with you. Jamal, Our endless talks on music and the belief you had in me and so many of us before we even believed in ourselves. I’m devastated.
‘No words can describe how grateful I am to of been in your presence. Thank you for all you ever showed me. My heart goes out to @brendaedwardsglobal and the whole family. RIP.’
Musician, singer, songwriter, rapper and record producer Elliot Gleave, better known by his stage name Example, also paid tribute to the star.
In a post in Instagram, he wrote: ‘Can’t believe you’re gone. 31 years old. Can’t find the words right now.’
DJ, model and presenter Snoochie Shy, AKA Cheyenne Davide said: ‘RIP to Jamal Edwards. One of the kindest, thoughtful and all round great person. Gone way too soon,’ she wrote on Twitter.
Awards organisation Mobo has paid tribute with a post on Twitter: ‘We are deeply saddened to learn of Jamal Edwards passing. As the founder of @SBTVonline, his groundbreaking work and legacy in British music and culture will live on.
‘Our hearts and thoughts are with his friends and family.’
Speaking after receiving his MBE in 2014, Jamal said he started SBTV to give his friends a platform.
Talented: By 2014, Jamal had amassed an estimated fortune of around £8 million and worked with the likes of Jessie J (pictured together), Emeli Sande and Ed Sheeran
He added: ‘It was a frustration of going to school and everyone talking about ‘how do we get our videos on MTV’.
‘YouTube was like a year old. I was like ‘I’ve got a camera for Christmas, I’m going to start filming people and uploading it’.
‘Everyone was looking at me like ‘what are you doing, like you can compete with these major corporations’, but I think I was early enough to believe that I could make a change.’
In the same interview, he described his working relationship with musicians as ‘symbiotic’.
‘50% is the talent and 50% is the platform,’ he said.
‘I try to focus on people that haven’t got the platform. As well as getting a really well-known artist I want to get the up-and-coming ones as well.’
Famous friends: Sir Richard Branson and Jamal at the Impatience is a Virture Festival at the Royal Opera House, London, in 2012
Source: DUK News