South Africa loses an icon: Tributes pour in for Johnny Clegg

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"Johnny was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer in 2015 but despite fighting cancer continued to tour and perform around the world to pay homage to his fans worldwide", Quin added.

Johnny's longtime manager Roddy Quin confirmed his death to Channel24 on Tuesday night in a statement: "It is with enormous sadness that we confirm that Jonathan (Johnny) Clegg, OBE OIS, succumbed to pancreatic cancer at the age of 66 on the afternoon of 16 July 2019 at his family home in Johannesburg".

Clegg died at the age of 66 after a long battle with pancreatic cancer.

Danny K, who worked with Clegg says, he was more than a musician and was able to unite the country through his music. An anthropologist that used his music to speak to every person.

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His long-time music manager, Ronny Quinn, who announced the news of his death, said Clegg left "deep footprints in the hearts of every person that considers himself or herself to be an African". With his unique style of music he traversed cultural barriers like few others.

Clegg's music influenced people around the world.

Apart from lecturing at the Universities of the Witwatersrand and Natal respectively, Clegg studied anthropology and combined his studies with music.

"His exposure to Zulu migrant workers during adolescence introduced him to the culture and music", Quin said. He was awarded the Order of Ikhamanga and various other prestigious awards for his skilful mix of Western pop with maskandi music.

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The musician performed as late as 2017, high-kicking and stomping during a tour called "The Final Journey" while his cancer was in remission. He also received a number of Honorary doctorates from the Universities of the Witwatersrand, KwaZulu-Natal, Dartmouth College and the City University of NY.

Last December, a group of South African musicians and entertainers recorded a cover of one of Clegg's classic tracks The Crossing as tribute to his work.

Clegg pursued a solo career that included performances to benefit AIDS awareness.

The group disbanded when Mchunu returned to his family farm in 1985 and Clegg formed Savuka, which means "we have risen".

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He is survived by his wife Jenny and their two sons Jesse and Jaron.

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