Dave paid tribute to the late SB.TV founder Jamal Edwards with an emotional speech during his show at the O2 Arena.
Edwards founded his YouTube channel in 2006 and provided a platform to almost every notable British rapper, including Dave, owe it to him for their big break. In 2014, Edwards was awarded an MBE for his services to music and named an ambassador for the Prince’s Trust.
His mother, Brenda Edwards, said her son passed away “after a sudden illness”. She said in a statement: “It is with the deepest heartache that I can confirm that my beautiful son Jamal Edwards passed away yesterday morning after a sudden illness.
“Myself, his sister Tanisha and the rest of his family and friends are completely devastated. He was the centre of our world.”
Speaking during his headline set at the legendary London venue, Dave told the crowd: “Jamal Edwards is the reason I’m standing in front of you guys here today. There’s so many different emotions that all of us feel – all of us that were so connected to him in so many different ways.
“We all have a different experience to him, but we all have so many things in common with the experience. And he’s one person in the world that just wanted to help, that just wanted to see every single person that he touched shine.”
Later on, Dave remembered how “he gave me an opportunity when no-one would” and paid for one of his earliest music videos when the rapper couldn’t afford it “out of the love and kindness of his heart”.
He continued: “Every single thing that I have today – we have today – we owe to Jamal Edwards… I want to say I’m so, so, so grateful for you, brother. Jamal, I love you, I love you, I love you.”
Watch the heartwarming moment below.