Ed Sheeran released a music video planned by his late friend Jamal Edwards, who died aged 31 before the video could be made.
The Shape Of You singer collaborates with American rapper Russ on the track Are You Entertained.
Sharing a snippet of the video with his 39.6 million Instagram followers, Sheeran, 31, wrote a lengthy post explaining how the collaboration came about and why bringing the ‘vision’ to life was important to him. of Edwards.
After meeting Russ at a restaurant, Sheeran said the pair bonded over “pasta and wine”, later writing the song together via email.
Sheeran said he then “contacted” Edwards for music video ideas “knowing he would create something amazing.”
Music entrepreneur and YouTube star, Edwards was the founder of the online urban music platform SBTV – which helped launch artists such as Sheeran, Dave and Jessie J.
He died in February at his home in Acton, west London, “due to cardiac arrhythmia caused by recreational drug use,” his mother Brenda Edwards confirmed following an inquest into his death.
“Jamal was trying to make it the best video any of us could do”
Sheeran went on to describe Edward’s hard work putting the video together: “Jamal then planned it out for the next two months, sending me locations, ideas, cameos, trying to make it the best video I could ever have. each of us can do.
“We were supposed to shoot in February, but the day before Russ left, Jamal tragically passed away. Our whole world was upside down, and I had to cancel and tell Russ that wasn’t happening, but he was so, so understanding, on a level I’ll never forget.
“Jamal’s mum @brendaedwardsglobal and sister Tanisha a few weeks later said we still had to try and bring Jamal’s vision to life, so with the help of his amazing production team at @radicalmedialondon and @jakenava directing, we shot it.”
Sheeran said he “felt so sad” to shoot that day but at the same time “very proud”.
He continued: “I wish Jam was here to see it, I wish we did it together, but it would be buzzing to see how all of his people came together and brought his vision to life.”
Sheeran thanked Russ for being “such an amazing human,” adding, “Jamal lives forever.”
Russ also shared a snippet of the video on his Instagram page, paying tribute to both Edwards and Edwards’ mother, Brenda, whom he called a “warrior of love and light.”
The rapper said he was “beyond grateful that you all let me be a part of something so special”.
Subscribe to the Backstage podcast at Apple podcast, Google Podcasts, Spotify, Loud speaker
After Edwards’ death earlier this year, Sheeran paid tribute to himcalling him his “brother” and attributing his own success to him, saying “I wouldn’t be here without him”.
Edwards was also an ambassador for the Prince’s Trust, a charity run by the Prince of Wales, and in 2014 he was appointed MBE for his services to music.