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'I have to get on, Ke sa phela (I'm still alive)’ - musician Dr Jonas Gwangwa

Dr Jonas Mosa Gwangwa is a legendary jazz musician, songwriter and producer that has contributed to the liberation of South Africa. He was born in 1937 in Orlando East, Soweto and remains one of the most prominent and influential figures in the South African jazz scene .

Dr Gwangwa was the brains behind The Amandla Cultural Ensemble and has composed scores of films like Cry Freedom. He says that music has always played an influential role in his life and adds that his family use to sing all the time.

I just thought that I would play with an instrument in my spare time says Dr Gwangwa.

When Huge got a trumpet, I asked for a trumpet but actually I wanted a clarinet and used the wrong name.

Dr Jonas Mosa Gwangwa, jazz musician, songwriter and producer

I noticed that the Arts and Culture Festival which had all kinds of black artists won’t work because they wanted to have different shows says Dr Gwangwa. He adds that he thought they should have one show.

Thabo Mbeki who was the ANC representative at Nigeria at the time said that I was right and this was a big festival says Dr Gwangwa.

What keeps me going firstly is my family and my music. That keeps me going and I have a responsibility to my friends and my fans – I have to get on, Ke sa phela (I am still alive).

Dr Jonas Mosa Gwangwa, jazz musician, songwriter and producer

[WATCH] legendary South African jazz musician, songwriter, and producer Dr. Jonas Mosa Gwangwa chats about the origins of the word Amandla

Click on the link below to hear part 1 of the profile interview…

Click on the link below to hear part 2 of the profile interview…


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