Sibusiso ‘Mash’ Mashiloane shows off the trophy he received for winning the best African jazz artist award at the All Africa Music Awards (Afrima), in Ghana. Simanga Zondo
Durban-based pianist and composer Sibusiso “Mash” Mashiloane has won the best African jazz artist award at the All Africa Music Awards (Afrima) in Ghana.

“This award is not only for me. I want to thank God, who enables me, and my family, church, colleagues and students,” he said this week.

“Thanks to the early musicians, such as Busi Mhlongo and Hugh Masekela, who stood the testing times in documenting their talents and the stories of our communities.

“I dedicate this award to my mother, who passed away while we were in the studio to record the winning album Rotha - A Tribute to Mama.”

The master pianist was nominated for the track Niza, taken from his second album, titled Rotha, which was released in 2017.

Niza is a song that was influenced by Mash’s background: “I have listened to and watched a lot of traditional dancers, from iZangoma to amaSokane, and the sound and movements are what inspired me to compose Niza,” he said.

Mashiloane said ahead of the awards ceremony that he was excited and proud to be representing South Africa. “I recognise myself and my music as embedded in the society that I call home and I would not be able to compose the music I do without the influence of my country and the city I live in.

“This makes me extra proud to be able to represent my culture through music and be recognised for the creation of it.”