A memorial service was held Dec. 5 at the Lincoln Theatre, 1215 U Street NW, D.C., for Reginald “Polo” Burwell, 42, long-time leader of TCB, a go-go band, who passed away on Nov. 26 at Saint Thomas More Medical Complex, a nursing and rehabilitation center in Hyattsville.
The band wrote under a picture on Instagram, “Due to requests from the family, we dint [sic] post [until] now with their permission. RIP Polo the king of the bouncebeat and founder of TCB Band. As a band we already missed u over huge almost 4 years. You fought, but now that you’ve been take [n] to a better place, we always [are going to] miss, remember and party for you. R.I.P. Polo.”
Burwell collapsed onstage during an April 10, 2010 evening performance at the ICON club in Waldorf, Md. following an afternoon show in Philadelphia and was taken backstage. Band members said he looked weary and grimaced as he complained of headaches.
Burwell began to shake violently and was taken to United Medical Center in Southeast D.C.
Burwell was unresponsive when they reached the hospital. A scan revealed bleeding in his brain. According to medical records provided by his parents, hypertension was a possible cause.
His blood pressure spiked as high as 272 over 173. He was transferred to Washington Hospital Center in critical condition.
Burwell had a severe brain hemorrhage that left him in a coma. Despite this, the band continued to travel and play without their leader.
After his death, the band remains an active element of the D.C. go-go scene, holding on to the title “The Bounce Beat Kingz” without him.