Connect with us

Music & Film

Jazz legend Jonas Gwangwa passes away



South Africa has lost yet another giant in the arts. Award-winning jazz musician Jonas Mosa Gwangwa has passed away aged 83.

Gwangwa’s death falls on the third anniversary of fellow South Africa jazz legend Hugh Masekela’s death and the second  anniversary of Zimbabwean legend Oliver Mtukudzi’s death.

President Cyril Ramaphosa has paid tribute to Gwangwa, saying: “Jonas Gwanga ascends to our great orchestra of musical ancestors whose creative genius and dedication to the freedom of all South Africans inspired millions in our country and mobilised the international community against the apartheid system.

“In our hour of mourning the loss of many precious lives around us, we pray also that the soul of Jonas Gwangwa will rest in peace.”

Born in Orlando East, Soweto, Gwangwa is most well-known for songs such as Morwa and Kgomo.

He carved an illustrious career for himself alongside the likes of Miriam Makeba and Hugh Masekela, particularly in the 1960s when they all left apartheid South Africa for the US.

According to SA History Online, Gwangwa was mentored by jazz legend Kippie Moeketsi at the start of his music career.

While overseas, he was instrumental in productions such as King Kong and Cry Freedom and attended the Manhattan School of Music.

He returned home in 1991, just after the unbanning of political parties and the release of Nelson Mandela.

Here at home, he continued his magical work, producing commercial music and producing the theme song for the then-new soapie Generations.

Gwangwa’s song for the movie Cry Freedom was nominated for a Grammy, Bafta and Golden Globe in 1988.

He performed the song at the Grammy Awards in the US that same year.

He also received numerous awards here in South Africa including South African Music Awards in the jazz category.

He received the National Order of Ikhamanga from President Ramaphosa for his exceptional contribution to music and the struggle for freedom in South Africa. – EWN

Music & Film

Nalzeey aims to heal people through her new single



Staff Reporter

Free State rapper Nalzeey has released her latest hip-hop single called Khayalam.

In the song, Nalzeey, whose real name is Naledi Keke Antoinette Mofokeng, is pouring out her heart and soul talking about losing her loved ones.

“I lost my grandfather in 2016, my uncle in 2017, my other uncle in 2018 and my grandma the same year in December,” says Nalzeey in a statement released by her publicist.

“I didn’t get a chance to heal because everything happened so fast in a short period.

“It was a tough situation for me because I had to be strong for my mother and, honestly, I was scared she might be next because I didn’t understand what was happening.”

According to Nalzeey, she went through depression but quickly managed to rise and fix herself.

“This song is dedicated to everyone who lost their loved ones. I hope it helps people who have been through tough times to heal,” said Nalzeey.

Over the past five years, the Botshabelo musician has released various singles including Mamasita and Amandla which have earned her a loyal fan base.

The latest song is available on iTunes, Spotify, Deezer and other digital platforms.

Nalzeey is also a graduate facilitator at the University of the Free State Business School, an entrepreneur and a digital marketer.

Continue Reading

Music & Film

Actor, filmmaker Shona Ferguson succumbs to COVID-19



South African actor and film producer Shona Ferguson has died.

He was 47.

Conrad Mwanza, a representative from the Ferguson Foundation, confirmed Ferguson died on Friday at Milpark Hospital in Johannesburg due to COVID-19-related complications and not a heart operation as earlier reported.

“Yes, Mr Ferguson passed away at noon today. And all the family is asking for at the moment is just to mourn in private. But it’s very difficult, you can imagine, for Connie and the family,” Mwanza said.

Ferguson was married to actress and producer Connie Ferguson.

Born Aaron Arthur Ferguson on 30 April 1974, he started his acting career as Ace in the TV series Generations.

In April 2006, he started acting in Muvhango as Dr Leabu.

In March 2007, he left the Venda soap opera and starred as Itumeleng in The Wild from 2011 to 2013.

He started the production company Ferguson Films with his wife Connie in 2010, with both of them starring in the company’s first TV production, Rockville.

His other TV appearances include The Queen, Isidingo: The Need and Scandal.

In 2020, Ferguson made his Netflix debut, partnering with the streaming service on the six-part series Kings of Joburg. – Staff Reporter/Wires

Continue Reading

Music & Film

Free State mourns Tsepo Tshola



Staff Reporter

The Free State Department of Sport, Arts, Culture and Recreation has described the late jazz maestro Tsepo Tshola as a genius who touched the lives of many with his music.

Popularly known as the Village Pope, Tshola, 67, is one of the big names that graced the Mangaung African Cultural Festival (MACUFE) since inception and drew large crowds.

“Ntate Tsepo Tshola will be remembered as a musical genius whose music communicated the lived realities of the society in which we exist,” said MEC Limakatso Mahasa.

“. . . he indeed became a voice for the voiceless and marginalised among our populace hence he vociferously called out social ills through his music and rallied those in the high echelons of power to action,” she said in a statement.

Mahasa said her department attributes the success of MACUFE to artists of Thsola’s calibre as he played a pivotal role in the history of the annual festival spanning over two decades.

“MACUFE is now a global concert and funfair because he was among those who believed in the strength and capabilities of local artists to attract international audiences,” she said.

“He was a musical giant whose music shaped the cultural identity of Africans on the continent and across the diaspora.

“He . . . leaves behind a rich discography that we all treasure as part of his legacy.

“Personally, I had the rare honour of spending time with Ntate Tsepo Tshola from 2003-2005.

“He was indeed a father, leader and musical genius. May his soul rest in peace.”

The Lesotho-born musician was admitted at a Lesotho hospital after contracting COVID-19 and succumbed to the disease on Thursday morning.

He was a former member of popular group Sankomota.

Continue Reading


Copyright © 2021. The Free Stater. All Rights Reserved