A year ago today, Mzansi lost one if its greatest music icons, Bra Hugh Masekela. The legendary musician died at the age of 78, after a 10-year battle with prostate cancer.
Hugh Masekela was and still is a South African icon. He is remembered around the world as the man who not only entertained, but also sent out strong messages against the apartheid regime. Many of his songs called for equality during the time of discrimination.
He was born in Witbank on the 4th of April, 1939. His father Thomas Selena Masekela, was a health inspector and a sculptor, while his mother, Pauline Bowers Masekela, worked as a social worker. He was raised by his grandmother, and she is the one said to have instilled his passion for music.
By the 1980s, Hugh had become a household name and he won many awards. His most popular songs to date include “Soweto Blues” and “Stimela”.
His song Thuma Mina has become the slogan for Cyril Ramaphosa’s ANC election campaign. The president repeated the lyrics of the song as a call for South Africans to accept the call to serve the nation.
His funeral was a private ceremony, as per his request, Briefly.co.za had learnt. His son Sal Masekela also added that his father would have wanted people to dance and celebrate instead of cry at the time of his death.
As we observe our first anniversary without him, we can reflect on his legacy and ensure that his contributions are shared with generations to come. He will always be with us and we can celebrate him through song and dance.
Thank you for the music and the message, Bra Hugh.
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