A vigil for Jamal Edwards took place yesterday (21st) in London. Jamal Edwards, the founder of SBTV who was awarded an MBE in 2014 for his work in music, died last week, aged 31. In a statement shared by Edwards' mother, the Loose Women presenter Brenda Edwards, it was confirmed that the entrepreneur, director, DJ, author and designer died after a sudden illness.
In the wake of the Edwards' death, a candlelight vigil took place last night (21st) by a mural of the entrepeneur outside the Everyone Active centre on Acton High Street, in west London. Friends, family and industry figures gathered at the vigil, where flowers, Chelsea FC shirts and written tributes were left for the SBTV founder, and a video was shared on social media of crowds dancing to Monsta Boy's 1999 UKG anthem 'I'm Sorry'. Birmingham artist Lady Leshurr and Scrufizzer were are also filmed performing at the vigil.
Luton-born and Acton-raised, Edwards started media channel SBTV in 2006, named as a nod to his then rap name, SmokeyBarz. Originating as a platform for him to share videos filmed on his estate, the platform went on to launch the careers of many artists, featuring work from Stormzy, Jessie J, Dave, Nines, Krept & Konan, and many others.
Edwards was also an advocate for mental health, and in March 2017 he made a documentary with The Guardian about male suicide, where he spoke to his childhood friends who suffer with mental health problems.
A few years later, in 2019, Edwards founded Jamal Edwards Delve (JED) a grassroots youth-centre project, which has refurbished and reopened four youth-centres in Acton since its launch. In December last year, he spoke with Dummy about the project, and said that “getting a little older I just feel like I have to give back”.