South African Kwaito legend Mandoza has died at the age of 38. Mduduzi Edmund Tshabalala was born in the Soweto township in the city of Johannesburg.
According to a Times Live report, Mandoza was battling cancer.
"In a statement released by his family at the time‚ it emerged that he had been fighting for his life after the cancer metastasized to his brain. Sithole stated in a series of tweets that he is currently at family home in Soweto with a relative. 'That moment when you are close to a situation but you can't report about it because one of your close friends is a relative‚' Sithole tweeted."
Fans of the South African star have taken to Twitter to mourn his loss.Mandoza's Chiskop was a big hit in the kwaito music scene. Mandoza started a solo music career in 1999 and released 9-II-5 Zola South. The album reportedly sold over 100 thousand copies and was praised by critics.
Nkalakatha was a bigger hit for Mandoza in 2000. The album achieved commercial success with a multi-platinum status. The title track became on of Mendoza's most recognizable songs and won the Song Of The Year category at the South African Music Awards in 2001.
In the same year, Mandoza also won in other categories, which includes Best Kwaito Artist, Best Male Vocalist, Best Album, Best Styled Artist, and Song Of The Year.In a 2010 interview, Mandoza is seen speaking about his album "Real Deal." He speaks about changing the style of his music to reflect his age. He also states that he doesn't want to be labelled a kwaito artist due to his diversity as an artist.
Mandoza went on to release two more albums before succumbing to his battle with cancer.
In an interview with Drum magazine this week, Mandoza's wife, Mpho spoke about their optimism in beating cancer before the artist passed way.His wife revealed that he was diagnosed with pharyngeal carcinoma, which is a type of head and neck cancer, which generally starts in the throat and nose.
"The tumour is pressing on the brain but it's not brain cancer," Mpho said.
Mandoza was blinded by the cancer spreading, according to his wife. However, the hitmaker remained optimistic until the very end.Mandoza's wife also spoke about them raising their children and their hope while battling cancer.
"I'm not even thinking about death. We want to destroy this cancer forever. I know that eventually we all leave this earth but I say this is not the time yet. He still has a purpose. We still have kids to raise," she added.
A Tweet from a South African publication confirmed that Mandoza died in a hospital after being taken there the same day."Family spokesperson has confirmed Mduduzi Tshabalala passed away at around mid-day after being taken to hospital this morning. TK," the Tweet said.
Mandoza performed just about a week ago and his death comes as a shock to many fans. Mendoza's manager confirmed that he refused to be held back by cancer and performed for his fans despite his poor condition.Mandoza's son Tokollo said his father died a proud man and a family man. His emotional son told SABC news that his father told his to be strong if he died.
Mandoza was a very popular Kwaito artist that influenced a generation. His music transcended race and was popular among both black and white South Africans.
What is your favourite Mandoza song?
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[Featured Image by Bruno Vincent/Getty Images]