His talent took him across the world - he was Ray Charles' regular drummer - and the music he was exposed to sparked innovation when he returned home.
Songstress Dorothy Masuku once told South Africa's public broadcaster that music was like breathing for her.
South African jazz veteran Jonas Gwangwa has been getting recognition for the pivotal role he played in 'singing down apartheid.'
South African trumpeter Hugh Masekela made an impact across the world during his decades-long musical career.
It took ages for one of African jazz's hidden masterpieces to be reissued. Still today, four decades later, 1976's 'African Songbird' tells volumes about the politics of the time.