The 23rd of January 2019 marks 1 year since the passing of legendary jazz and afro soul musician, Hugh Masekela. Bra Hugh, as he was affectionately known, is remembered for his extensive contribution to the recognition and promotion of the performing arts in South Africa.
Bra Hugh was a world-renowned artist, a cultural activist, a warrior for the entire African continent, and in particular South Africa and its heritage, and has over the years been referred to the father of South African jazz. Masekela’s impact and legacy extends beyond the borders of South Africa as he had a successful career around the world and even earned a Billboard number-one US pop hit in 1968 with his version of Grazing In The Grass. Masekela was instrumental in and played a big role in inspiring anti-apartheid songs such as Soweto Blues and Bring Him Back Home. Together with the likes of Jonas Gwangwa, Miriam Makeba and even Caiphus Semenya and Letta Mbulu, they carried with them the pain of the South African apartheid struggle in exile, which they expressed through their music.
Having been relevant for over fives decades, Hugh kept innovating and reinventing his sound, and his incredible work and legacy will continue to live on in recordings of his live performances, his collaborations with a dizzying variety of artists and his autobiography Still Grazing. He has shaped and influenced and even collaborated with today’s prominent artists including, Thandiswa Mazwai, Micasa’s J Something, Berita, Mafikizolo, Black Coffee and many more.
Social media remembers the legend:
Long Live Papa Hugh Masekela ?Miss you Dearly ?? https://t.co/at8lvXUKuO
— TRESOR RIZIKI (@tresorofficial) January 23, 2019
— Peter Ndoro (@peterndoro) January 23, 2019
@hughmasekela “I got to where I am in life, not because of what I brought to the world, but through something I found – the wealth of African Culture” – Hugh Masekela #wemissyou#wewillneverforgetyou ❤️#oneyearagotoday pic.twitter.com/0BJfvUuDhk
— Nothemba Madumo (@nothembaujx) January 23, 2019
— Anerah Yasole (@AnerahYasole) January 14, 2019
O N E
year that we lost the legend Bra Hugh Masekela. I will forever be humbled to have met and worked with him. RIP pic.twitter.com/936lQpqB0I
— Ralf GUM #Progressions (@RalfGUM) January 23, 2019