The family of the late South African jazz icon Hugh Masekela says their hearts are heavy with sorrow following their loved one’s death.

Masekela passed away on Tuesday morning after a battle with prostate cancer surrounded by family members in a Johannesburg hospital.

In a statement, the family says: “It is with profound sorrow that the family of Ramapolo Hugh Masekela announce his passing…A loving father, brother, grandfather and friend, our hearts beat with profound loss.”

The family further went on to laud his contribution to the arts, describing his legacy as one filled with love and vanguard creativity.

“Hugh’s global and activist contribution to and participation in the areas of music, theatre, and the arts in general is contained in the minds and memory of millions across 6 continents and we are blessed and grateful to be part of a life and ever-expanding legacy of love, sharing and vanguard creativity that spans the time and space of 6 decades.  Rest in power beloved, you are forever in our hearts.”

Details of the memorial service and his burial will be communicated in due course.