Beloved Nigerian reggae star Majek Fashek has died at age 57.
The singer’s manager, Omenka Uzoma, told sources that Fashek (born Majekodunmi Fasheke), died in his sleep in New York where he had been battling an unspecified illness. In an Instagram video, Uzoma reconfirmed the news, praising Fashek for all he did for Nigeria.
It is true, the legend has gone to meet with the Lord. But at this time I want to say that we should all celebrate his achievements. He has done a lot for Nigeria, Africa.
With a high, melodic voice and a conscious vibe in keeping with a push to uplift, Fashek quickly gained a reputation as a voice of righteousness. His lyrics touched the lives of many and can hear his music playing still.
Fashek was born in the Edo state of Benin in 1963 and rose to prominence in 1988 when he released his solo debut album, ‘Prisoner of Conscience.’ Initially going by the stage name Rajesh Kanal, Fashek began his career as part of the trio Jastix before releasing his breakout solo hit in Nigeria, 1988’s “Send Down The Rain” and its parent album ‘Prisoner Of Conscience.’
After becoming the first African musician to sign to Interscope Records in 1990, where he released two acclaimed albums, ‘So Long Too Long’ and ‘Spirit Of Love,’ the following year. The title track from “So Long Too Long,” an anti-Apartheid anthem, gained Fashek wider recognition across Africa and beyond. This included a guest performance on Late Night with David Letterman in the US in 1992.
Fashek also worked with a number of high-profile musicians during his career, including Jamaican reggae legend Jimmy Cliff, Tracy Chapman and Snoop Dogg.
Last September he was taken critically ill in London, which led to false rumours of his death. Unfortunately, this time around the legend has passed in his sleep in peace.
Join us back in 1992 honoring Fashek with a throwback from his U.S debut with Letterman. Check it out below: