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Abu Dhabi, UAEMonday 25 June 2018

Hugh Masekela dies age 78

South African music legend Hugh Masekela has died at the age of 78. The jazz musician has been fighting prostate cancer since 2008

South African trumpeter and musician Hugh Masekela. Reuters
South African trumpeter and musician Hugh Masekela. Reuters

South African music legend Hugh Masekela has died at the age of 78. The jazz musician has been fighting prostate cancer since 2008.

His family released a statement to the media which read "After a protracted and courageous battle with prostate cancer, he passed peacefully in Johannesburg, South Africa surrounded by his family."

The trumpeter, who was due to play Dubai Opera on March 8, is one of South Africa's most well-known musicians. He studied at the Manhattan School of Music and developed his technique under the guidance of the late Dizzy Gillespie and Louis Armstrong.

In 1987 he appeared in the Graceland tour with Paul Simon, and in that same year he penned a song called Bring Him Back Home that became Nelson Mandela's theme song for his world tour after his release from prison.

In 2010 Masekela received the Order of Ikhamanga - South African National Orders Ceremony, and in 2014 he was given an honorary doctorate in music from the University of York.

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Read more:

Mandela Trilogy: The role of music in the anti-apartheid movement

Practice makes perfect for African jazz greats Manu Dibango and Hugh Masekela

Invisible in prison, Mandela was kept in spotlight by music

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