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Delroy Washington: Fundraiser launched to pay for funeral of Brent reggae giant who died after contracting coronavirus

PUBLISHED: 18:02 07 April 2020 | UPDATED: 18:15 07 April 2020

Delroy Washington. Picture: Angela Blake

Delroy Washington. Picture: Angela Blake

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A fundraiser has been launched to pay for the funeral of reggae giant and Brent community figure Delroy Washington, who has died of coronavirus.

Delroy Washington leads the crowds with a selection of Bob Marley classics at the plaque unveiling in 2012.Delroy Washington leads the crowds with a selection of Bob Marley classics at the plaque unveiling in 2012.

Washington, who met and worked with Bob Marley in Neasden in the 1970s, helped make Brent the European capital of reggae and was later instrumental in the campaign to erect a blue plaque at the house where Marley lived in The Circle.

He died on March 27 aged 68 after contracting Covid-19.

His nephew Miles Campbell has organised a GoFundMe campaign hoping to raise £23,000.

He said: “To everyone who met and knew Delroy he was a kind, humble, positive and intelligent man who genuinely had time for anyone.

“Throughout his life Delroy was a devoted and talented reggae artist who was discovered by reggae legend Bob Marley in the ’70s and subsequently went on to play with Bob and the Wailers.”

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Mr Campbell added: “Beyond all he was a brother, uncle, friend and all round great man who will be sorely missed.

“The floods of tributes online are truly touching and a testament to his passion towards reggae, the community and life in general.”

Washington released two albums, I-Sus and Rasta, on Virgin. His first studio experience came with Bob Andy, who as one half of Bob and Marcia had a hit with Young, Gifted and Black.

Andy died on the same day as Washington aged 75, after he also contracted Covid-19.

In later life Washington created initiatives such as the 12 Tribes of Israel, HPCC Bridge Park, I & I Idren of Israel in Wales and the Federation of Reggae Music UK, which led the successful blue plaque campaign in 2012.

He also sat on the Brent London Borough Of Culture (LBOC) 2020 Harlesden Working Group and was at the LBOC launch of the No Bass Like Home programme, which will highlight the borough’s rich reggae heritage that also includes Island Records and Trojan Records, which were both based in the area.

Washington wished to be buried at Kensal Green Cemetery, where his mother rests. To donate to the fundraiser visit gofundme.com/f/delroy-washington-funeral-fundraise.


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