He took me to Arsenal and coached my team: Portsmouth defender and Millwall loanee on being son of Grammy-winning music icon

Mahlon Romeo has lifted the lid on the influence of his iconic father on his life.

Thursday, 7th October 2021, 4:55 am

And the Pompey defender has revealed it’s football and not music, which shapes the memories of being the son of legendary DJ and producer, Jazzie B.

Romeo has spoken of what it was like growing up as the son of the Grammy-award winning founder of Soul II Soul, who was awarded an OBE for his services to music in 2008.

Soul II Soul may have sold a mind-blowing 10m albums worldwide and had a number one smash hit with Back To Life (However Do You Want Me) in 1989, but it’s a story much more familiar to football-loving families which comes to the forefront of Romeo’s mind when reflecting on growing up with his famous parent.

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The Londoner can remember being taken to Arsenal matches by his dad as a child, and his influence as a coach of his football team.

Despite the obvious impact of music and soul in the Romeo household, they are the moments the Antigua and Barbuda international cherishes today.

Romeo said: ‘Football and music were the two big influences growing up.

Jazzie B performing at Bestival in 2017. (Photo by Tabatha Fireman/Getty Images)

‘Music’s everything for me. It’s always been there, always.

‘If you grow up in a musical household it’s always going to mean everything.

‘It’s kind of helped shape how I’ve moved forward in life, it helps and means a lot to me.

‘My first memories of dad are actually football related, though.

Mahlon Romeo

‘He used to take me to the old Highbury, and he used to coach my kiddy team from when I was about seven to the age of 10.

‘It’s actually not musical memories, really. It’s all good football memories, really good football memories.

‘Music was there and it was just the norm to me.’

Romeo’s form has impressed in his eight appearances since joining on loan from Championship Millwall on deadline day.

The right-sided player’s dad has yet to see his son in action live on home soil, but the 26-year-old expects that to change move forward.

Romeo added: ‘He’s a Gooner, that was what was local to me and who he supports.

‘But I’m sure he’s going to be down here at some point, I’ve no doubt about that.’

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