Lucky Dube launched his career as a Mbaqanga singer in 1979 and rapidly released 4 traditionally Zulu albums, but in 1985, without the knowledge of his record company, Teal Records, Lucky went into the studio and recorded "Rastas Never Die" - the first ever reggae album to be recorded in South Africa. Because of the political situation and censorship in the government controlled media at that time it did not reach the airwaves and was banned immediately.
Having since sold in excess of 3 million albums, Lucky Dube is now the biggest selling reggae artist alive today. Lucky's appeal is pan African and his songs, his words and his voice are known and loved across the whole of the continent. Because of that appeal Lucky Dube and his band were chosen to headline the Live8 stage in Johannesburg along with Nelson Mandela in 2005.
Few global superstars who’ve racked up close to 20 years in the music business are still able to lay a claim to real inventiveness, Lucky Dube can still be counted amongst those few.
The 2004 Ireland shows kicked-off their summer European tour and co-incided with the celebration of Africa Day (May 25th) Lucky Dube flew-in from Johannesburg specifically to Celebrate Africa Day in Cork city and we were the first organisation to mark the occasion in Ireland. 2004’s Ireland shows were also notable for being the first fully integrated audiences I had ever experienced here.
Lucky Dube returned for his 4th tour of Ireland in 2007 and performed in Cork, Galway, Dublin, Limerick & Monaghan.
Lucky Dube Killed by Carjackers in Jo'burg South African Reggae star and regular FeileAfrica performer Lucky Dube, shot dead in front of his children on Thursday night 18th Oct. "Captain Cheryl Engelbrecht of the Johannesburg Police department said the incident took place at around 8:20 pm on Thursday evening when Dube was driving a grey Chrysler in the Johannesburg suburb," Captain Engelbrecht continued to say that the singer was travelling with his two teenage children, Nonkululeko and Thokozani, and had stopped to drop to drop them off at his brother’s house in the Rosettenville area of Johannesburg when he was attacked by three men in a blue VW Polo who were trying to steal his car. "His son, Thokozani, was already out of the car when he saw what was happening and ran to ask for help." After the incident Thokozani was too traumatised to give the police any description of the assailants.
One of the accused had covered his head with a towel and the others had hoods pulled over their faces. They removed these once they turned their backs to the gallery and faced the magistrate. Accused number two, speaking softly, expressed concerns that his appearance on October 30 would clash with his appearance in Heidelberg on November 27 in another case. Roux said this would not pose a problem. Three of the accused were of slight build and two of them had scars across their heads. The fourth man was larger and had a scar across his face.
When they returned to the cells, they covered their faces again -- an action met by howls of protests from the public gallery. People demanded that they show their faces.
Singer Pat Sibeko, who was in Dube's band in his early days, began sobbing as he looked at the accused and had to be comforted by a police officer.
Anyone wanting to pay their last respects could do so by attending a memorial service at the Bassline in Newtown at 11am on Wednesday. Flowers could be delivered to the offices of Slave Promotions, Downtown Studios, Second Floor, 62 Goud Street, Johannesburg.
Dube, 43, is survived by wife, Zanele, and seven children -- Bongi, Nonkululeko, Thokozani, Laura, Siyanda, Philani and three-month-old Melokuhle. He recorded over 20 albums in a career spanning over two decades, and won many local and international awards. Lucky and his band were due to perform at a concert this Sunday (28th October) to mark the anniversary of Oliver Tambo's 90th birthday the concert will still take place at Germiston Lake and will be a tribute to Lucky Dube as well, Charles Mabaso from the city of Ekurhuleni says Lucky Dube, who said he was inspired by late Reggae star Peter Tosh (who was murdered in similar circumstances 20 years before also aged 43 at the time), last performed in Ireland in April this year when he played in Limerick, Cork, Galway, Dublin & Monaghan. We were already in the process of arranging His Ireland tour for 2008. Dube's pan-African appeal meant that his Ireland tours were always greatly anticipated by Ireland's African communities and previous tours had heralded the first ever truly integrated audiences here. Lucky Dube was born in South Africa on August 3, 1964. For more info on Lucky Dube click here. Tribute from Gallo Lucky's record label
Lucky Dube was killed by carjackers in Johannesburg on Thursday 18th October. Lucky was born on August 3rd 1964.
Asanda Austin Jezile
South Africa is today mourning the loss of our "Reggae Son," Lucky Dube. With his family, we grieve over the killing of a beloved brother and artist, who has been a prolific force in the country's music industry for more than 20 years.
Lucky Philip Dube was born on August 3, 1964 in Johannesburg. His parents separated before his birth and he, his sister, Thandi, and his brother, Patric, were raised by his mother, Sarah.
As a child, Lucky worked as a gardener. After realizing he would not earn enough money to keep a family, he decided to go to school. There, he joined the school choir, then formed a group called the Skyward Band with some of his friends. Also at school, he discovered Rastafarian culture and became a Rastafarian, although he did not smoke marijuana or drink alcohol.
At the age of 18, Dube joined the Love Brothers, a band formed by his cousins which performed the traditional Zulu music known as Mbaqanga. While still a schoolboy, Dube and the band recorded their first album at Tear Records in Johannesburg (now the Gallo Recording Company). When the album was released, the group called itself "Lucky Dube and the Supersoul."
For the group's second album, Dube began to write some of the lyrics himself. He had begun to learn English, and from this time he began to write songs in both Zulu and English – and later even in Afrikaans.
When the fifth Mbaqanga album was released, the word "Supersoul" was dropped from the group's name on the basis that fans were responding to Dube's music and performance in particular. This was done on the advice of Dave Segal, who was to become Dube's recording engineer.
In 1984 he released a mini-album called "Rastas Never Die" but it did not sell as well as expected. However, he continued to release commercially successful albums – in all, he recorded 21 albums in Zulu, English and Afrikaans and became South Africa's biggest selling reggae artist.
Asanda Austin Jezile – an intern from the journalism department of the Cape Peninsula University of Technology in AllAfrica's Cape Town office – is a disc jockey in his home community of Mfuleni in South Africa's Western Cape province.