Government deeply saddened by the death of legendary singer Joseph Shabalala

Government is deeply saddened by the passing of legendary singer Joseph Shabalala. The 78-year-old is the founder of the Grammy-winning Isicathamiya group Ladysmith Black Mambazo. He died this morning at the Life Eugene Marais Hospital in Pretoria.

The whole nation mourns this talented icon, whose music not only put South Africa on the global stage but also could be heard in the suburbs, townships, villages all corners of our country. He was well known for his unique and stirring vocals. The Ladysmith Black Mambazo has been singing songs of peace since the early 1960s.

A key highlight in their history was a collaboration with Paul Simon who produced the group’s first worldwide release, Shaka Zulu, which garnered the group their first Grammy Award in 1988, for Best Folk Recording The group has won five Grammy Awards and travelled the world, putting South Africa’s music industry on the map in an innovative way. In 2014 Shabalala, retired after over fifty years of leading his group.

His passing is a great loss not only to his family but to the music industry, the country, and the international stage at large. His contribution to the struggle for liberation will never be forgotten. May his soul rest in peace.

Source: Government of South Africa