Jamal Edwards death: Idris Elba, Rita Ora and AJ Tracey pay tribute after SBTV founder dies aged 31

The music entrepreneur’s manager confirmed the news of his death on Sunday (20 January)

Peony Hirwani,Roisin O'Connor
Monday 21 February 2022 16:22

Jamal Edwards travels to Kibera

Tributes are pouring in to celebrate the life of Jamal Edwards, who set up the online music platform SBTV and helped launch the careers of some of the UK’s biggest artists.

The entrepreneur’s manager confirmed the news of his death on Sunday (20 February).

On Monday (21 February), Edwards’s mother Brenda announced that her son died of a “sudden illness” and said that she and her family were “completely devastated” by his death.

“It is with the deepest heartache that I can confirm that my beautiful son Jamal Edwards passed away yesterday morning after a sudden illness,” she said.

Edwards 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.

Dua Lipa, AJ Tracey, Idris Elba and comedian Mo Gilligan have led a wealth of tributes from the entertainment industry and beyond for Edwards.

“We lost one Jamal Edwards. You will be missed little brother,” actor and music producer Elba wrote on Instagram, alongside a black square.

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 and you’ve inspired a whole generation. Rest easy Jamal Edwards.”

Dua Lipa wrote on Instagram: “Heartbroken to hear this news. RIP Jamal. My thoughts are with all his friends and family and the many people’s lives he has touched and brought together. Gone way too soon.”

Enjoy unlimited access to 70 million ad-free songs and podcasts with Amazon Music Sign up now for a 30-day free trial

Sign up

Singer Gabrielle said it was “so heartbreaking to hear of Jamal Edwards passing, he was such an incredible young man, who was loved and will be missed by so many.

“Meeting him and doing my A64 was an honour, he was just so lovely. My heart goes out to his amazing Mum, his family and all who knew him.”

Rapper AJ Tracey added: “RIP Jamal Edwards, West London legend status.”

Singer Rita Ora wrote: “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,” she added.

Amelia Dimoldenberg, the creator of Chicken Shop Date, also praised Edwards.

She wrote: “Jamal Edwards, one of the most generous people I have ever met. Someone who loved music and truly believed in all the joy it brings. Going above and beyond to connect people and bring ideas to life.

“You have shaped culture and changed the lives of others – never to be forgotten. Thank you for everything. You will be so greatly missed.”

The official Youtube Twitter account said the industry had “lost a legend”, adding: “Jamal Edwards was an inspiration to so many, supporting artists and shaping culture through @SBTVonline. Sending our condolences to Jamal’s family & community.”

Tributes also extended beyond the entertainment landscape, with Chelsea FC taking to Twitter to pay respects to the Blues superfan.

The football club said: “We’re deeply saddened to learn of the passing of Jamal Edwards. An inspiration to many, we’re honoured that he was part of our Chelsea family.

Blues and England player Reece James added his condolences, writing on Twitter: “Rest in peace Jamal Edwards. I’m lost for words.”

Rapper Professor Green, real name Stephen Manderson, praised Edwards for his kindness.

“I don’t know how you always had the positive energy you did, how you were always everywhere doing more and more to help others wherever possible,” he wrote on Instagram

“Neutral with no agenda, so, so kind and genuine, not one of the many ‘professionally nice’ people who switch it on and off, you shon bro. Thank you for everything, and may your family feel all the love we all have for you.”

“Saving one life is something to be proud of. Saving multiple is something to be celebrated for,” rapper Hardy Caprio tweeted. “Here is a man who saved all of our lives whether you were watching his vids or an artist he gave opportunity. R.I.P Jamal Edwards. Those good deeds will always follow you.”

Loose Women presenter Charlene White has criticised the way in which Edwards’ death was announced.

News of Jamal’s death first surfaced on social media on Sunday (20 February), with White’s co-star and Jamal’s mother, Brenda Edwards, releasing a statement via Good Morning Britain.

At the start of Monday’s episode of Loose Women, White said: “The opportunity to share Brenda’s loss and the family’s loss was taken away from Brenda because of various people on social media who decided to tell Brenda’s story and Jamal’s story without consulting Brenda, which was not fair in any shape or form.”

Additional reporting from PA

Register for free to continue reading

Registration is a free and easy way to support our truly independent journalism

By registering, you will also enjoy limited access to Premium articles, exclusive newsletters, commenting, and virtual events with our leading journalists

Please enter a valid email
Please enter a valid email
Must be at least 6 characters, include an upper and lower case character and a number
Must be at least 6 characters, include an upper and lower case character and a number
Must be at least 6 characters, include an upper and lower case character and a number
Please enter your first name
Special characters aren’t allowed
Please enter a name between 1 and 40 characters
Please enter your last name
Special characters aren’t allowed
Please enter a name between 1 and 40 characters
You must be over 18 years old to register
You must be over 18 years old to register
Opt-out-policy
You can opt-out at any time by signing in to your account to manage your preferences. Each email has a link to unsubscribe.

By clicking ‘Create my account’ you confirm that your data has been entered correctly and you have read and agree to our Terms of use, Cookie policy and Privacy notice.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy policy and Terms of service apply.

Already have an account? sign in

By clicking ‘Register’ you confirm that your data has been entered correctly and you have read and agree to our Terms of use, Cookie policy and Privacy notice.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy policy and Terms of service apply.

Register for free to continue reading

Registration is a free and easy way to support our truly independent journalism

By registering, you will also enjoy limited access to Premium articles, exclusive newsletters, commenting, and virtual events with our leading journalists

Already have an account? sign in

By clicking ‘Register’ you confirm that your data has been entered correctly and you have read and agree to our Terms of use, Cookie policy and Privacy notice.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy policy and Terms of service apply.

Thank you for registering

Please refresh the page or navigate to another page on the site to be automatically logged inPlease refresh your browser to be logged in