Here at Backseat Mafia we were upset when we heard that London rapper Ty had died, a man we had written about quite a bit on the site, and interviewed as well. So we were delighted to receive the news that there is a new permanent Brixton mural pay homage to himafter he passed away in May due to complications related to COVID-19.  

The stunning mural was unveiled yesterday at Valencia Place by artists Bunny Bread and Jason Caballero of Create Not Destroy & Jazz re:freshed. Located under an arch, the larger-than-life piece replicates an iconic photographic image by award-winning photographer Benji Reid.  The mural was organised by newly-formed charity Pass the Torch Music Foundation, which has been set up to support independent Black music artists with annual bursaries in Ty’s name.  The charities founder, Cyndi Anafo said: “we wanted to make sure that there was a permanent legacy piece in Brixton honouring Ty, that would be here for a considerable amount of time”.

 Supported by The Brixton Project and sponsored by music arts organisation Jazz re:freshed who recently won Best Independent Label category at this years AIM Awards 2020, the mural commemorates the Mercury Prize nominated rapper in his home town of Brixton, on what would have been his 48th birthday. He was born 17 August, 1972. 

The acclaimed and revered artist released 5 albums – his last being ‘A Work of Heart’ released with Jazz re:freshed in 2018 – and a string of formidable collaborations with international acts including De La Soul, Talib Kweli, Tony Allen and Damon Albarn.  Benedict ‘Ty’ Chijioke was fondly known as the unofficial Mayor of Brixton, as he touched and supported many people’s lives in the local area.