THE funeral of Sibusiso Khomo, aka “R Mashesha”, at the King Zwelithini Stadium in Umlazi on Saturday was more like a concert than a funeral.
Thousands of kwaito music fans came out in numbers to bid farewell to the late Big Nuz member.
The fallen star, who had been in hospital for two weeks, died last week Friday after after a long throat-related illness.
It was a sad goodbye for his family and friends and a great loss for his fellow group members Mampitsha, Danger and their boss DJ Tira who sat together on the front row of the VIP marquee.
Sadness and pain was written on each of their faces as they lost a colleague they spent most of their time with touring locally and internationally.
Mampitsha could not hold back the tears as he remembered his friend whom he said he knew even before they established the group.
“We hope that his passing will bring us, the remaining members of Big Nuz even closer.
“One thing we know for sure is that there will never be another R Mashesha. We’re going to miss him for a long, long time and we hope that he will become a good ancestor to the group.”
He said the biggest challenge that R Mashesha left behind was for Big Nuz to continue without him.
“We may in future consider getting a replacement, but we believe that nobody will replace him. He was a uniquely talented man, who gave a lot of respect to music,” said Mampintsha.
T’zozo described R Mashesha as a free-spirited soul who could easily work with anyone. He appealed to the audience to help Mzansi artistes ensure their work is not pirated.
“Our careers lie in your hands. If you support those who pirate our music, you’re not contributing a cent to our lives. “Getting all the praise for the good work that we produce doesn’t help if we have nothing in our pockets,” he added.
Hip Hop musician Ricky Rick said Big Nuz’s music had a lot of influence on the hip hop genre.
“Big Nuz was the reason why we put kwaito into hip hop. My music is influenced by them and I look up to them as a young musician from KwaMashu.”
KwaZulu-Natal MEC for Arts and Culture Ntombikayise Sibhidla Saphetha said the province had lost a lot of artistes in a space of just weeks.
“We first lost the legendary David Masondo and in just weeks we lost Maskandi musician Mtshengiseni Gcwensa and in few days time we heard of the passing of R Mashesha. These are people that we were proud of as they come from our province,” she said.
She encouraged young artistes to follow the good example of R Mashesha by becoming professional artistes. L’vovo Derango said he would always remember R Mashesha as a humble yet very talented musician.
R Mashesha’s brother Siyabonga Khomo thanked the music community for the love and the support they offered his family in their time of loss. He singled out Afrotainment boss and the group’s manager DJ Tira for the support and for making the funeral a success. He said DJ Tira and Tzozo Zulu had stood with the family and did all the running around doing the preparations for the funeral. — Citizen/DailySun/Showbiz Reporter.