South African jazz musician Jonas Gwangwa is dead

South Africa jazz trombonist and composer Jonas Gwangwa, whose music powered the anti-apartheid struggle, has reportedly died on Saturday aged 83.

President Cyril Ramaphosa whole mourning the legendary musician who was nominated for an Oscar for the theme song of the 1987 film “Cry Freedom” said.

“A giant of our revolutionary cultural movement and our democratic creative industries has been called to rest,”

“The trombone that boomed with boldness and bravery, and equally warmed our hearts with a mellow melody has lost its life force” the president added.

Gwangwa was born in October 1937 in Soweto and went on to have a career spanning 40 years.

“He delighted audiences in Sophiatown until it became illegal for black people to congregate and South African musicians were jailed merely for practising their craft,” the presidency’s statement said.

He was awarded the Order of Ikhamanga, South Africa’s highest national award presented for achievements in art and culture, in 2010.

 

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