Remembering Magesh | 5 things to know about the late kwaito star

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Tokollo Tshabalala
Tokollo Tshabalala
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  • South African kwaito legend Tokollo 'Magesh' Tshabalala has passed away.
  • His family confirmed that he passed away from an epileptic seizure.
  • Magesh had had an interesting life and was the son of Stanley Tshabalala.


The sad news of kwaito legend Tokollo ‘Magesh’ Tshabalala’s passing was confirmed by his family on Monday, 15 August 2022.

According to the statement, the 45-year-old passed away on Monday morning after suffering from an epileptic seizure.

“The family requests for privacy during this difficult period. All details pertaining to his memorial and funeral service will be shared in due course,” the statement reads.

Fondly known as Magesh, Tokollo was one of the three members of the iconic Kwaito group TKZee alongside Kabelo Mabalane and Zwai Bala. The three formed the group in the 1990s and shot to fame in the late ‘90s after releasing their hit singles, Phalafala and Shibobo.

Here are five things you should know about the late musician:

1. He is the son of a legendary footballer

Magesh is the son of former Kaizer Chiefs player and Bafana Bafana coach, Stanley ‘Screamer’ Tshabalala. Stanley is currently the director of the Orlando Pirates football club.

2. Trouble with the law

Magesh found himself on the wrong side of the law on a few occasions. The first public incident occurred in 2001 when he was involved in a car accident in Botswana that left businesswoman Maria Monyatsi dead. He was acquitted of reckless driving and culpable homicide charges in 2008.

In 2010, the star once again found himself in hot water when he reportedly filled his car with a full tank of petrol and allegedly fled from the scene without paying. According to Daily Sun, Magesh was never arrested because he eventually came back to the station to settle his bill and the garage owners then withdrew charges.

In 2014, he was arrested after allegedly assaulting his band member Zwai Bala. According to reports by The Citizen,  after an argument about travelling broke out between the two, Magesh allegedly hit Zwai with a ‘sharp object on the face’. Magesh was then arrested and appeared in the Randburg Magistrates Court where he was granted R1000 bail. He was later found not guilty of the assault and resolved the matter with Zwai.

3. He had his own solo career

In the 2000s, Magesh ventured out on his own and released a number of successful albums, namely Mas Que Musica (2005) and Longest Time (2007), which was his most successful album.

4. He co-owned a record label

Magesh was also the co-owner of Heist Entertainmenta record label inclusive of artists, songwriters, producers and engineer managers, music publishing, touring and merchandising.

“It is home to a diverse roster comprised of critically acclaimed recording artists, writers and producers including Tokollo Magesh Tshabalala, Kasket Dilinja, and Terry ‘Terrorist’ Pinana,” its website states.

5. A recipient of a lifetime achievement award

In 2019, TKZee were recipients of the Lifetime Achievement Award at the 25th South African Music Awards for their indelible contribution to the local music scene. The group had also planned a comeback and were performing at events over the past two years.

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