JOHANNESBURG, January 2 – Legendary South African Afro-pop producer Robbie Malinga was on Tuesday hailed for mastering the business side of the music industry and avoiding the stigma of dying poor despite having been a successful artist.
One of Malinga’s mentees, Sbusiso “Dj Sbu” Leope, said that Malinga had been a smart musician and had established the publishing company of his music, meaning he owned the whole catalogue of his music.
In 2015, Malinga started his own record company Robbie Malinga Entertainment which houses artists such as Musa Sukwene, Sammisto and Maxi. Before then, Malinga was a producer and writer and also held the position of artists and repertoire at Universal Music South Africa.
Universal Music SA representative Madwedwe Ntombini said that Universal was behind Malinga’s family all the way and urged the family to be strong.
“We are going to miss his creativity, his discovering talent every month, his smile and laughter, we will also miss his smell coz he wore expensive and unique colognes,” Ntombini said.
Malinga’s friend and Mpumalanga businessman Johan Sibiya said that he was saddened and disappointed by Malinga’s death. Sibiya said he had shared a business-minded friendship with Malinga and had always encouraged each other.
“When I bought all the Jet Music stores in the country because music houses were shutting down, I wanted South African musicians to have a place to sell their music. Robbie was the first to give me a call and congratulated me,” Sibiya said.
“The Jet Music in Maponya Mall will miss him a lot because that is where he would promote a lot of his music. We want government to acknowledge artists because they create a lot of jobs and contribute a lot of tax. But there are no parliamentarians that are standing up for artists despite the artists’ work being pirated and exploited by people on the streets, they don’t even have protection from the State.”
Malinga died at home among his family on Christmas Day after a long illness following his diagnosis with pancreatic cancer in June.
– African News Agency (ANA),
South African music producer Robbie Malinga will be laid to rest on Tuesday following his death on Christmas day after a long illness.
Malinga, who was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer in June this year, was on Friday celebrated in song and dance by fellow musicians, politicians, actors soccer teams, as well as community members from where he grew up in Meadowlands in a memorial service at Grace Bible Church in Soweto.
Malinga had been sickly for most of 2017 and despite losing a significant amount of weight, he continued to travel and produce music.
Known as “The Hitmaker” for producing many of the country’s hit songs and moulding the careers of many artists, the 49-year-old was hailed as the pillar of SA’s music industry whose loss would be felt greatly.
During his more than two-decades career, Malinga had mentored and produced many or the country’s top artists, including Zahara, Kelly Khumalo, Naima Kay, Musa Sukwene, Karabo of IdolsSA fame, the late Kwaito artist Brown Dash, Brickz Mabrigado, and even the king and godfather of Kwaito music, Arthur Mafokate and Mdu Masilela.
Sibusiso “Dj Sbu” Leope, who worked with Malinga at TS Records, described him as one of the best music producers Africa had seen.
Fellow musician Kabelo Mabalane said Malinga was not only a famous producer, but also a God-fearing man as they had met more in church than in a recording studio.
Malinga’s funeral service would be held at Rhema Bible Church from 8am. He is survived by his wife Ann, son Robbie Junior, daughter Zanokuhle, his parents, one sister and two brothers.
– African News Agency (ANA),