In Memory of Jamal Edwards

TRENCH's executive editor, Laura 'Hyperfrank' Brosnan, takes a moment to write from the heart, with this personal tribute to Jamal Edwards.

A portrait of Jamal Edwards (2020) by Christopher CargillTRENCH

Dear Jamal,

I’ve been thinking a lot about when you and I first met. You must have been around 15 years old, and we bonded over the silliest details of grime and UK rap, which we still found ourselves doing as recently as a few weeks before you left us. 

A candid photo of Jamal Edwards (2018) by Laura BrosnanTRENCH

You truly loved the music, but most of all: the people behind it. I can write books about the groundbreaking cultural moves you made in your years within the business world, UK music—via your iconic platform SBTV. 

You would film everyone from grime and road rap dons to pop and R&B stars—and beyond. But if I’m honest, what lives in my heart right now is that joyful spirit and beaming smile of yours. 

It truly is a testament to how golden your heart was that so many people who met you, knew you or witnessed your work from a distance have been touched by your beautiful light. 

It didn’t matter if you were picking up a Grime Forum Award for Best Platform or an MBE from the Royal Family, you always kept the same youthful charm with everyone. No matter which big door you were breaking down, you always left it open for the next person to come through.

You actually cared about people. No agenda. Just pure love, passion, and self-belief. You were just a genuine, sweet guy. With every conversation, you lifted every single one of us up with your words, actions, and openness to be transparent about the struggles and chaos too.

I’m so thankful for the wisdom you shared with me during rockier times and I appreciate you for continuously showing genuine support. I’m so grateful for the memories we shared, including that epic 21st birthday of yours.

The battle with security backstage at The Game concert for you to film, the interviews during the recent YouTube Originals Series Together We Rise and the many Nando’s lunches and hilarious festival antics with JP.

A candid photo of Jamal Edwards (2018) by Laura BrosnanTRENCH

But especially the last time I got to hug you at Jammer's Top Producer screening. Turning around after feeling a tap on my shoulder to a huge smile shouting “Hypes!” really made my day. 

SB, your vision and work ethic inspired so many of us to chase our dreams, but it was your heart that helped bring so many outsiders together to feel like a large family. 

The countless birthdays, SBTV Summer Cookouts and other events were not just great times—you gave us all a chance to reconnect amidst the chaos of everyday life. 

A portrait of Jamal Edwards (2020) by Christopher CargillTRENCH

I feel numb knowing you’re no longer here but so proud of the legacy you’ve helped carve out for yourself and the whole scene. 

I can’t even begin to think about a world without you in it, but I’m forever grateful to witness the impact of your shine for decades to come. 

Love and miss you, J!
Laura 'Hyperfrank' Brosnan x

GRM Daily's Posty, SBTV's Jamal Edwards and Link Up TV's Rashid talk together while being filmed for YouTube Originals "Together We Rise" documentary by Laura BrosnanTRENCH

This digital work has been produced in collaboration with PRS Foundation and POWER UP. The article first featured in TRENCH x Union Black's Chapter One: Game Changers zine.

Credits: Story

Words by Laura 'Hyperfrank' Brosnan
Photography by Christopher Cargill and Laura Brosnan [Frank Archives]
Videos by SBTV
Commissioned by TRENCH

Credits: All media
The story featured may in some cases have been created by an independent third party and may not always represent the views of the institutions, listed below, who have supplied the content.
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