Mina Nawe. Picture: Supplied
Mina Nawe. Picture: Supplied

Family, band members honour 'Mina Nawe' star Zanele ‘Mazet’ Maseko

By Kedibone Modise Time of article published Apr 16, 2020

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While the country is mourning the passing of Afro-pop singer and leader of "Mina Nawe", Zanele 'Mazet' Maseko, her band members are hard at work to produce an album in her honour.

The remaining band members, Nkosinathi 'Carlo' Mpanza and Candid 'Manchild' Shaw are putting finishing touches to the album and are also planning a tribute show which will feature most of their songs and new ones. Maseko died on Sunday after a short illness.

The late singer’s husband Owen Manda hailed and honoured Maseko for her powerful vocal abilities and her contribution in the music industry.

Manda said he would remember his wife for her beauty, artistry and style.

He said: “Mazet was a beautiful soul. Her gorgeous smile will always be with us. She was a true believer of liberation of African artists in this tough industry. I would love for her life to be celebrated through growing the industry and opening opportunities for young, talented artists from the townships. She paved the way for other aspiring artists.”

Echoing Manda's statement Mpanza and Shaw said: “We would like her life to be celebrated through music, which was her number one passion, she lived and breathed music.

About how Maseko would have wanted to be remembered, the duo said: “Mazet loved entertaining, performing, we are certain she would have loved to be remembered in the same fashion. 

"She created a lot of music, most known, some not - we will share that with not just supporters of Mina Nawe but fans of her personally. We are planning a specially curated tribute show which will cover 80% of our catalogue and 20% of our unreleased music, this is the music we created leading up to her last days and the music we will create in her honour.”

Mpanza and Shaw also shared their fondest memory of Maseko. “Our fondest memories remain the ones we made when creating the music, those memories are engraved in our hearts as the music is to our fans. One memory that jumps out is during the writing and recording of ''Where I Wanna Be''. 

"Mazet wasn't sure about the song after recording it, she was skeptical about how people would receive it considering the fact that it was sonically different from all our songs. We insisted on performing the song with every chance we got, in just a few weeks the song was one of the most loved songs in our catalogue." 

They added: “We started receiving sampling requests from record labels, producers and DJs alike who wanted to remix the song - DJ Mbuso, Black Coffee and Kent and Euphonik were among those who did an amazing job in making the song popular. The song became the biggest and most sampled Afro-Pop song in Africa.”

The duo expressed their message of condolence to the family.

“To her family at large, thank you for gifting us with the talent that was Zanele 'Mazet'. 

"To Mazet, ''Zet'' as we called her in the band, thank you for your loyalty to Mina Nawe and the dream we all shared - we will forever honour your gift through music. We love you, always!

"Mina Nawe will be releasing another album with new songs totally inspired by Mazet and our journey together. We will be sharing some of these in the tribute show we are planning. People should keep their eyes on our social media platforms for details."

After years as the lead vocalist of "Mina Nawe", Maseko began her solo career as a casino singer. 

For three years she worked with Sun International’s Meropa Casino in Polokwane and North West. The casino contract preceded signing an International Mother Africa production, which saw her performing in Europe and North Africa.

In 2019 Mazet refocused her musical efforts in Mina Nawe's new album which she worked on until her last days. 

Maseko will be laid rest on Saturday, April 18. The funeral service will take place in Daveyton. Due to lockdown regulations, only family members and close friend will attend the funeral service.

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