sizwe shabalala - themba - tribute song with patrick oshea

Themba – Tribute song with Sizwe Shabalala

Happy420 HappyFourTwenty SA Music Shabosh Sizwe Shabalala

It was on this Thursday seven days before, January 5th 2017 at roughly 17h40min (South Africa), that Sizwe was fatally stabbed in Pinetown, Durban. Crime is out of control in our country!

The loss of our Grandparents, fathers, mothers, uncles, aunts, cousins, brothers, sisters, our friends and loved ones. Through selfish and barbaric acts of violence. Enough!

trinity-sizwe-shabalala-ben-voss-patrick-oshea-uthongathiThemba is the name of Sizwe’s son. Themba means “Hope” in Zulu. Themba is also a tribute song to Themba and all the crime victims and their families and friends. Thank you to Sarah Funnell, a friend of Sizwe’s who had a copy of his memoirs and kindly sent me a copy.


On Monday 9th January I sat quietly during the morning. It had been a roller coaster weekend of emotions. The tears flowed. I held my guitar while I contemplated Sizwe. I apologised to Siz for not moving faster on the burning desire we both shared to connect musically again.

Over the last 5 months we were in regular contact. Siz was keen to be part of the new HappyFourTwenty album. We were both amped for the upcoming collaboration. About 12 weeks ago I said to Siz we could also do some acoustic duo stuff…just the two of us and suggested the name SHABOSH. That cracked him up every time. The phonetic meaning Shabosch is: Wow! Amazing Holy S…!(Well it is! the first release by SHABOSH!)shabosh-sizwe-shabalala-patrick-oshea-themba

In that morning sun of monday I began to play the chords for Themba, the C run down to A….I was feeling Sizwe in a massive way. I kept jamming…adding these little blues riffs that siz would do…the word Themba came out…kept on jammin’ with my man…then came the chorus chords – then the chorus melody and lyrics just flowed ‘hear the words of my father, here with us now’ .

When I stopped playing I began to cry…tears of happiness and sadness. At that moment Sizwe’s words from his memoir’s came to mind for the verse lyrics. The song was done. The recording is a rough first version of Themba which I recorded here at home in Montagu (so please excuse the roughness and rawness of recording/mix) – our song was finished during the seven days since Sizwe’s passing. The beat & rhythm in Themba comes from the guitars…Siz and I jamming it out with alternating strum.

sizwe shabalala - patrick oshea - shabosh - themba songWe completed Themba today, 12th January 2017 and we look forward to recording another version hopefully soon with Ben Voss and our other friends.

Siz You Rocked It!


Go in peace

Hambe kahle mfowethu.

Love from your friend and brother in music

Patrick #love #peace #hustle


Hear Sizwe Sing ~ Our first recording in our first band Trinity back in 1989 @ SABC Studio Durban / Radio Zulu

2 comments to Themba – Tribute song with Sizwe Shabalala

  • Mez

    A really beautiful tribute that has left me in tears! Thank you. Go well Sizwe, my friend.

    • admin

      Thank you for your kind words Mez, in loving memory of our friend Sizwe.