Home Forums African Entertainment Zone Lucky Dube: Raggae And Rastafari Legend

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    Precious Chiamaka

      Lucky Philip Dube, known affectionately as ‘Lucky’ was born in Ermelo, South Africa, on 3 August 1964. His mother, having been separated from his father before his birth, raised him along with his two siblings. He was named Lucky because he was born after many failed pregnancies.

      His mother, however, relocated for work so he and his siblings spent most of their childhood with his grandmother.

      At that time, he worked as a gardener but realized he wasn’t earning enough, so he decided to go to school.

      While he was in school, he and some friends joined a choir and from there he formed his first musical group named the Skyway Band. It was also in school that he discovered the Rastafari movement.

      When Dube was 18 years old, he joined his cousin’s mbaqanga band, known as the Love Brothers. The band signed with Teal Record Company and recorded the album Lucky Dube and the Supersoul. At this time, Lucky Dube Started learning English.

      Dube began to adopt to reggae and after his fifth album, he realized that fans were responding positively to his music so he decided to introduce socio-political messages into his songs.

      The first album, Rastas Never Die was released in 1984 and was banned in 1985 because of its critical lyrics. He did not get discouraged, he did live performances of the reggae tracks and later wrote and produced a second album, Think About the Children, that same year. This album sold heavily attaining the platinum sale status. Through this album Dube became a popular reggae artist in South Africa and was recognized globally.

      He released albums that were successful commercially and sold out worldwide. He won several awards from albums like Prisoner, Captured Live and House of Exile. In 1996, he was named the “Best Selling African Recording Artist” at the World Music Awards and the “International Artist of the Year” at the Ghana Music Awards.

      Lucky Dube also took acting roles in Voice in the Dark, Getting Lucky, and Lucky Strikes Back.

      Dube used reggae music as a platform to promote racial equality within South Africa during aparthied. Through his music he spoke on the harsh realities of the nation’s struggle for freedom and equality. This proved to be a great inspiration for people fighting for a better world.

      Unfortunately, Lucky Dube was killed on 18 October 2007 in Rosettenville, by assailants who thought he was a Nigerian.

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