Ben Sharpa mesmerised audience at the Bassline stage on Saturday at the 2013 Cape Town International Jazz Festival held at the Cape Town Convention Centre. Picture : Ian Landsberg

Veteran South African rapper Ben Sharpa died this morning at age 41 after being hospitalised for complications with diabetes. Sharpa was prominent in the mid-2000s in the local hip hop scene. 

His music touched on social and political issues in country. His album B. Sharpa, released in 2008 was well acclaimed. The album was released by Cape Town based indie label Pioneer Unit. From B. Sharpa was the massive street hit "Hegemony". In it the artist rapped about police brutality. 

                                          

In his prime, Sharpa toured Europe extensively. He performed at festivals such as Rio Loco (FR), Riddim Collision (FR), Paleo (CH), Glastonbury (UK), Dour (BEL) and Extrema (NL).

In 2012, he released an album called 4th Density Light Show (4DLS) with the production duo Pure Solid.

The South African hip-hop community is mourning the passing of the legend. 

RIP to a SA Hip Hop legend @bensharpa sad news to receive today 😔but the music will live forever 🙏🏽 #KaptainMyKaptain #RestInRhyme https://t.co/DrFnOs1f11

Damn b, rest in eternal music Ben Sharpa✊🏾

Woke up to the news my brother @bensharpa is dead. 

Just heard sad news about the death of one of the best to ever do it, one of the pioneers of SA Hip Hop, all time fave; Kaptin my Kaptin Ben Sharpa is no more 😭😭😭🙆🏾‍♂️🙆🏾‍♂️ RIPBenSharpa pic.twitter.com/BdI426acVv

S.A. #hiphop suffered a MASSIVE blow today. 😢😭 Rest in eternal POWER #BenSharpa! One of the greatest to ever drop bars in the southern hemisphere & the only underground cat with a HYPE mag cover.

The Saturday Star