3. Humility – Tuku was a well decorated artist who rose to the pinnacle of his career and purpose. In all this he maintained a level head. He remained approachable never wanting bodyguards to keep him away from people. We would have coffee like we were real brothers.
4. Excellence – This man never liked lukewarm performances. Even at 66 he danced away with energy and zeal. He was out to ensure that his work spoke for itself. One would feel bad to buy pirated copies of his music because he was so dedicated to his craft and produced masterpieces.
5. Consistency – He produced almost the same amount of albums that match his age or close. Over 60 albums is not a small achievement. It takes working at it continually, discipline with time and money as well as working with teams to build such a track record.
6. Hard work – His music spoke about us reaching to the top the right way. He encouraged us to work hard and showed it by working hard himself. He would go on international tours that took him from one city to another. He literally lived on the plane, pursuing his passion and purpose.
7. Raising others – He has mentored many artistes and inspired thousands indirectly. When people look at his template they just feel inspired regardless of the area of endeavor. He was and remains legendary in that he has people who say “had it not been for Tuku, I would not be where I am now”.
8. Collaboration – He was always eager to work with others to advance his calling and to build the industry. He collaborated with jazz artists, choral groups, church choirs, dance hall artists to name a few. This he did locally and internationally.
9. Power of relationships – Very few people are as connected as the now late Dr. Tuku. He has built relationships with the “Who is Who” of the industry and indeed citizens of the world. He would travel distances to ensure he maintained relationships.
10. Being organized – He has always desired that he runs his business professionally. He chose to have great managers over the years, something that many upcoming artistes need to take a leaf from. He had shows arranged in advance. He showed up and delivered with excellence. Professionalism set him apart.
I will miss Tuku physically. I cried my heart out on hearing the news that the show I attended in Johannesburg late last year would be the last one. I picked all his music and that is all I have on my play list right now. My desire is that we honor this man even in his death. We did not do enough when he lived but we can still do better to propel his legacy further. A Tuku Day, National Hero status, Awards in his Honor, supporting his causes, setting up of a Tuku Foundation to combine his work and that of Sam Mtukudzi. This is just me dreaming. I am sure you have other ideas to share.
If I am hurting like this, what of Daisy “Svovi”. What of the family and all of you. “Achachema umwe ndianiko, iwe wafirwa ini ndafirwa. Achabata maoko umwe ndianiko” Words by Oliver Mtukudzi.
May Dr Oliver Mtukudzi Rest In Power. Till we meet again.
Tuku Fan and Friend