Durban - Minister of Arts and Culture Nathi Mthethwa on Sunday urged the youth to stop emulating American music but to remember that they are Africans first.Mthethwa was speaking at the funeral of Mbaqanga music legend David Masondo, who was laid to rest in his home town of Hammersdale in KwaZulu-Natal on Sunday.Masondo, 67, who founded The Soul Brothers, died from renal failure last Sunday.“It’s important to encourage young people to remember that you are African first, you need to know where you come from. “Don’t be a tree without roots. The point is to conquer the world. We must be known around the world like Soul Brothers. He [Masondo] may be gone but his music will always be there to remind us that we defeated apartheid.”The Mpumalanga Stadium was packed to capacity with friends, fans and South African music legends, including Sipho “Hotstix” Mabuse. “Artists like American rapper 50 Cent do not want you to mimic them, they want to know what South Africans are doing and that is why they still talk about Mariam Makeba’s Phatha Phatha, Ladysmith Black Mambazo and The Soul Brothers," Mthethwa said.Mthethwa described Masondo as a loving and humble man who worked tirelessly to put South Africa on the map.“He and his band members understood the meaning of social cohesion. If you listen to their songs, they talk about fighting for your rights, peace and togetherness. They have been singing this message since 1974.”He said South Africans must be proud of The Soul Brothers. “Today we are paying tribute to this gallant fighter; many people don’t know that he played a key role in fighting apartheid,” said Mthethwa. Earlier gospel queen Rebecca Malope, Ihashi Elimhlophe, and Junior Mambazo paid moving tributes to Masondo. During the proceedings fans demanded Masondo’s music to be played forcing program director, poet Mzawakhe Mbuli, to play Mama KaSibongile. Those in attendance sang and danced as they celebrated Masondo’s life.Masondo’s daughter, Vivian, said her father loved when respect was shown, as he respect young and old.“When my father started a project, he completed it. He was a very diligent man and a patient man. Even during the most difficult times, he was strong,” she said.Masondo’s friend, Jabu Khanyi revealed that Masondo was on a dialysis when he died. “His kidneys were not functioning. When I said goodbye to him, it was difficult. The Sunday he passed he was not responding, he was staring into space.” When the rest of the Soul Brothers took the stage to celebrate Masondo, the crowd joined in as one in their singing.Masondo was buried at Emalangeni Cemetery in Hammersdale.