1943 – 13 October 2009
A poem by Kelwyn Sole from his debut collection, The Blood of Our Silence (Ravan, 1987):
Dark golden boat
on a sea
far away, rock with me
rock with me:
gentle me home
past the mud-lined street
where thoughts stick fast
and children pick rubbish
the night flakes notes
from the scalp of my sorrow –
hide in my pillow
and cry for me
Mankunku playing “Yakhal’ Inkomo”
Profile of Mankunku at music.org.za
Short obituary by Ryland Fisher.
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My heart was filled with great sadness upon hearing of the death of that great iconic jazz legend – Winston “Mankunku” Ngozi.
He was…no…IS.. a great “Jazz Legend”, not only in South Africa, but internationally.
In the late 60’s and eary 70’s, he along with others Legends such as Robbie Jansen, “Dollar Brand” (Abdullah Ibrahim),to name but a few, taught me, a teenage “whitey”, that music transcended all boundaries, and helped show me the abhorance of “Apartheid”.
I used to have to “sneak into” venues where he was playing (with a little help), and watch from “the curtains” as I was not allowed to be in the audience. To say that I was absolutely “blown away” would be putting it mildly!
Thankfully, I no longer have to sneak into venues, and I got to see a lot of Winston playing at numerous local jazz venues over the last 15 years or so. He would always come over to me, wherever I was sat (normally at the bar), and have a bit of a chat in one of his breaks.
From the bottom of my heart I thank him for helping to “show me the light”.
I thank you for the years of entertainment and insperation. You will be sadly missed, but thankfully, your music will “live on”…forever!
Louis (The “Badgeman”)
Tsamaea hantle, moholoane.