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South African Hip-Hop Legend Ben Sharpa Has Died

Rest in bars, Ben Sharpa.

Veteran South African rapper Ben Sharpa, who was prominent in the mid-2000s died this morning, at age 41. He had been hospitalized for complications due to diabetes.


Ben Sharpa was a respected lyricist, whose music touched on social and political issues in South Africa. He has an acclaimed album under his belt, titled B. Sharpa, which was released in 2008 by the Cape Town-based indie label Pioneer Unit. The album boasted the massive street hit "Hegemony," in which the artist was rapping about police brutality.

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

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

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


These Photos Are A Window Into South African Hip-Hop's Mid-2000s Era

Photo by Pierre Crom/Getty Images.

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