Death of a singer of jazz and south africa’s Ray Phiri

Art 12 July, 2017
  • Photo AFP
    Ray Phiri


    Wednesday, 12 July 2017 12:19

    Wednesday, 12 July 2017 12:19

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    The singer and guitarist of jazz in south africa’s Ray Phiri, famous for his participation in the album Graceland, the American Paul Simon, died on Wednesday died of lung cancer at the age of 70 years, announced his family.

    Ray Phiri was the lead singer of south african group Stimela and had acquired an international reputation with Graceland (1986), an album recorded in South Africa, which marked the beginnings of the world music.

    The artist died on Wednesday morning in a hospital in the province of south africa, from Mpumalanga (is), according to a spokesperson of the family, Paul Nkanyane.

    “It was poorly these last few days. I talked to him Monday and he was fighting, but unfortunately nothing more could be done for him,” he said to the local press, “the doctors said they had done everything to save it”.

    The tributes to the singer with a hoarse voice, famous for his hits “Whispers in the Deep” and “Phinda Mzala”, a mixture of jazz and african sounds, have flocked Wednesday.

    “It was a giant of the music. This is a terrible loss for South Africa in particular and the music industry in general,” responded the president, Jacob Zuma, in a press release.

    His real name is Raymond Chikapa Enock Phiri, he had used music to promote social values and peace, especially during the years of repression by the regime of apartheid that has taken officially end in 1994.

    “Stimela was the heartbeat of South Africa. From Stimela, no other group has influenced south african politics,” tweeted the south african singer of soul, Simphiwe Dana.

    In 2015, the group had published “The Best Moments of Stimela”, with its greatest hits of the last thirty years.