SOUTH AFRICAN REGGAE STAR LUCKY DUBE SHOT DEAD
LUCKY DUBE SHOT DEAD
… As South Africa loses third music star in three yearsBY AYENI ADEKUNLE One of Africa’s greatest reggae star and one of the continent’s most enduring performers Lucky Dube has been confirmed dead. According to reports, Dube was shot and killed in an attempted car hijacking in Rosetenville, a South Africa suburb around 8pm on Thursday October 18, while he was dropping off his two children (a boy and a girl) at a family member’s house. And sadly, his two kids were watching, helplessly, as their father, 43, (he was born on August 3, 1964) was shot by bandits who attempted to hijack his car as his kids stepped out. Reports say he attempted to drive away from the scene, but lost control of his car and hit a tree. Lucky Dube is the third major South African music star to pass on in the past few years. Songstress Brenda Fassie was reported dead at 40, of a drug overdose on May 9, 2004, while on October 23, 2006, her protégé Lebo Mathosa, 29, was killed after she crashed her SUV. There has been tremendous outpour of emotions across the music world globally as news of his death filtered out Thursday night. ‘his death, senseless and random, leaves a great void in the music industry. A 25 year career ends in tragedy’ read a statement from his label Gallo Records on Friday. ‘Lucky was not just an extraordinary artist, he was a personal friend. We go back over twenty years and had both a business and personal relationship. It’s so sad to lose such a great friend and so tragically, why?” lamented Ivor J. Haarburger, CEO of Gallo Music Group.The deceased music star started his career in 1982, aged 18, with the release of a mbaqanga (a Zulu music tradition) album before his transition to reggae in 1985. he had all of 22 albums to his credit (in Zulu, English and Afrikaans) His last album, Tribute was released in April. With his long-time sound engineer and best friend Dave Segal, he created some of the most legendary pieces of reggae music ever recorded, including the tracks Prisoner, Taxman, Slave, Victims, Together As One and Respect – all social anthems that garnered him the adoration of the people of his country – and across the globe.
Lucky was an artist that continued to break international barriers and according to a report on his website, he recently just signed a deal with Warner Music International, securing him album releases across Europe of his latest album Respect.The late reggae apostle enjoys a strong following in Nigeria, despite having at a time, being strong rivals with Majek Fashek before the latter’s career nosedived. Dube visited Nigeria twice in 2006 – to perform at Felabration and at the Cross Rivers state Xmas festival respectively. He is survived by his new wife Zanele and his 7 children Bongi, Nonkululeko, Thokozani, Laura, Siyanda, Philani and a three-month old baby Melokuhle.South Africa is one of the world’s most crime-ridden countries, with nearly 20,000 murders recorded in the last year.