Namibia’s kwaito king, Gazza, is among artists who have paid tribute to Marais Sadrag Nakale (popularly known as Nakale yaNakale or Sisande), who died in a Windhoek hospital yesterday morning, at the age of 60.
Gazza said: “He was the king of shebeens. You would hear his music from jukeboxes in the villages.”
He also described Nakale as “one of a kind” and someone everybody loved, regardless of him not marketing his work on social media platforms.
“When you converse with him, he has always been 100% real, even if he is going to say something that makes everybody uncomfortable,” Gazza said.
Gazza wished the family strength and comfort during this difficult time.
“He worked very hard, as he was his family’s breadwinner. My prayer is that they draw comfort and strength from God to get through this difficult time,” he said.
Family representative Agnes Sakaria confirmed Nakale’s death yesterday, after a long battle with cancer.
“Nakale was diagnosed with cancer in 2016 and has been ill since then,” Sakaria said.
He had travelled from Ekoka in Ohangwena to the Windhoek Central Hospital to undergo a medical procedure.
“We visited him on Saturday evening and he was not responsive, we were under the impression that he was just heavily medicated,” she said, adding that, they were informed of his death early yesterday morning.
She described him as always fun and bubbly.
“He has been an entertainer to most, even at home,” she said.
“Towards his last days, the jokes were less, as he was worried about his condition,” Sakaria said.
Nakale is remembered by many as unique and talented and his death comes as a great loss to the Namibian music industry.
Tate Buti remembers him as “a straight forward guy”.
“He was easy to work with, unless you approached him in a way that wasn’t favourable,” he said.
Tate Buti wished the family strength during this time of mourning.
Tekla Iita, popularly known as Teqla, described Nakale as “a guy full of life”.
“He was funny and creative and overall, I feel he was just a unique being,” Teqla said.
She said Nakale was always full of surprises.
“He and Tate Buti had a lot in common, in the sense that when Tate Buti calls you for a song, you never really know what you are going to work on,” she said.
She joined in wishing the bereaved family sincere condolences.
“I want to send my condolences to the family during this difficult time and encourage them to remember to celebrate the person that he was,” Tequila said.
Patrick of the PDK group, said Nakale was funny and always joking around.
“Nakale treated us as his young brothers, always looking out for us,” Patrick said.
He said working with him was always fun and exciting.
“We always had fun in the studio and he was always happy,” he said.
Patrick said Nakale was unique in his approach to music and his death will negatively affect the music industry as a whole.
“There was something outstanding about how he did his music and how he put his messages out through his music. So, his death is a great loss indeed,” he said.
Patrick extended his condolences to the bereaved family and the nation.
Former chief executive of Nascam John Max remembers Nakale as one of the most prominent members of the organisation during his era.
“He started his musical journey long ago, when he would rearrange hymns from the hymn book, which was when he became popular in his region,” Max said.
According to Max, Nakale significantly contributed to the Namibian music industry, and his approach was different as he chose to sing in his vernacular language.
Max said Nakale’s death is a great loss to the Namibian music industry.
He encourages the family to remain strong during this difficult time of bereavement.
Nakale is survived by three siblings, three children and two grandchildren.