Legendary musician Bra Hugh Masekela has died, SAfm and eNCA reported on Tuesday. Bra Hugh’s manager, Josh Georgiou, was not immediately available to confirm the report. The musician’s team released a statement in October saying he had been battling prostate cancer since 2008.
The statement explained that the jazz veteran underwent eye surgery in March 2016 after the cancer spread, and had to go into theater again in September 2016 as another tumor was discovered.
In December, Georgiou told TshisaLIVE that he was fighting the disease with everything he had.
Bra Hugh was born in KwaGuqa township in Witbank and began singing and playing the piano as a child.
After seeing the flick Young Man with a Horn at 14-years-old, Masekela began playing the trumpet. His first trumpet was given to him by Archbishop Trevor Huddleston, an anti-apartheid chaplain at St. Peter’s Secondary School.
He soon mastered the instrument and by 1956 joined Alfred Herbet’s African Jazz Revue. Bra Hugh’s music was inspired by the turmoil that South Africa went through during apartheid and he said it was used as a weapon to spread political change.
— SAfm news (@SAfmnews) January 23, 2018