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To me, my father has always been both ageless and immortal.

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He was helped by Trevor Huddleston and international friends such as Yehudi Menuhin and John Dankworth, who got him admitted into London’s Guildhall School of Music.

During that period, Masekela visited the United States, where he was befriended by Harry Belafonte.

As a product of the meticulously designed apartheid regime of 20th century South Africa, my fathers life was the definition of activism and resistance.

Despite the open arms of many countries, for 30 years he refused to take citizenship anywhere else on this earth. To know Hugh Masekela was to know no matter class, creed, color, religion or any other made up distinctions, he stood with empathy and compassion, locked arm in arm with the distressed, displaced and downtrodden everywhere and anywhere on this planet.

His belief too strong that the pure evil of a systematic racist oppression could and would be crushed. He carried a deep seeded belief in justice, freedom and equality for all peoples to the very end.

He scoffed at the futile idea of borders defining humanity.After a recent trip to Tanzania caused me to share with my dad that my heart was full, he simply said this to me, ‘I can give you my heart to take in the overspill’.🇿🇦 A post shared by Selema Mabena Masekela (@salmasekela) on This is my all time favorite pic with my dad.Even more than all of that, it was his undying and childlike love for South Africa and the entire African continent; with its dizzying displays of natural beauty, music, art and culture that mesmerized me more than anything.He was beautifully obsessed with showcasing the endless magic and pageantry of African peoples to a western obsessed world.At the end of 1959, Dollar Brand (later known as Abdullah Ibrahim), Kippie Moeketsi, Makhaya Ntshoko, Johnny Gertze and Hugh formed the Jazz Epistles, the first African jazz group to record an LP and perform to record-breaking audiences in Johannesburg and Cape Town through late 1959 to early 1960.

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