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Brinsley Forde MBE (born 16 October 1953, Islington, North London) is best known as the founder member of the reggae band Aswad and as a child actor in the children’s television series Here Come the Double Deckers (1970–71).
Forde appeared as Herman in two episodes of the sitcom Please Sir!. He appeared as Wesley in the feature film of the same name in 1971. Forde’s feature film debut had come a year earlier when he played a substantial role in the John Boorman film Leo the Last (1970), which was filmed in West London in the streets soon to be demolished to make way for the Lancaster West Estate. He appeared in the James Bond film Diamonds Are Forever and the television programme The Georgian House. In 1980 he starred in Babylon (directed by Franco Rosso), as Blue, a disenfranchised youth who becomes a deejay on a South London reggae soundsystem.
Forde presented VH1 Soul Vibrations, BBC’s Ebony & Ebony on the road, and was one of the radio presenters to open the BBC’s first digital station 6 Music with his radio show Lively Up Yourself and Dub Bashment. Forde can be heard presenting the radio documentaries Behind The Smile: The Real Life of Bob Marley and Island Rock to mark the 40th anniversary of Jamaican independence.
A two-time Grammy Award nominee with Aswad, Forde scored a British number one chart hit with “Don’t Turn Around” in 1988, followed by another top 20 chart hit, “Give A Little Love”. The band continued to feature in the top 20 on the British charts with the album Distant Thunder, and the tracks “On and On”, “Next to You” and “Shine”.
In September 2009, Forde appeared with Dizzee Rascal performing “We can’t tek no more of that” from Dizzee’s album Tongue n’ Cheek on the BBC2 show Later… with Jools Holland. Forde followed this up with a repeat performance as part of the BBC Electric Proms in October 2009.
Forde was appointed Member of the Order of the British Empire (MBE) in the 2015 New Year Honours for services to the arts.