Picture: Supplied

Legendary trumpeter, corneter, singer and composer Hugh Masekela has died after a long battle with prostate cancer. He was 78.

Masekela died in Johannesburg surrounded by his family.

"A loving father, brother, grandfather and friend, our hearts beat with profound loss. Hugh’s global and activist contribution to and participation in the areas of music, theatre, and the arts in general is contained in the minds and memory of millions across 6 continents and we are blessed and grateful to be part of a life and ever-expanding legacy of love, sharing and vanguard creativity that spans the time and space of 6 decades.  Rest in power beloved, you are forever in our hearts," the family said in a statement.

In October Masekela released a statement informing fans that he had been battling prostate cancer since 2008.

"I have cancelled my commitments for the immediate future as I will need all my energy to continue this fight against prostate cancer,” the statement read.

“This will be the only public statement I make on the matter, and I ask for privacy going forward, so that I may rest and heal."

It would be the only statement the star would make on his health status. 

Tributes for Bra Hugh have already started pouring in on social media.

A baobab tree has fallen, the nation has lost a one of a kind musician with the passing of Jazz legend bra Hugh Masekela. We can safely say bra Hugh was one of the great architects of Afro-Jazz and he uplifted the soul of our nation through his timeless music.

We would like to extend our condolences on the passing on of Jazz Legend . Bra Hugh lost his battle to prostate cancer today. [Photo: Afromuzik]