Johnny Clegg

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Johnny Clegg
Born 07 June 1953
Bacup, Lancashire
Died 16 July 2019 (aged 66)
Johannesburg, Gauteng
South Africa
Cause of death Pancreatic Cancer
  • Musician
  • Dancer
  • Composer
  • Anthropologist
Children Jessie Clegg
Musical career
Associated acts

Johnny Clegg, OBE, OIS (born Jonathan Paul Clegg 7 June 1953 – 16 July 2019) was a South African musician, dancer, composer and anthropologist perhaps best known for his great command of the Zulu language which greatly influenced his music. He was one of half Juluka alongside Sipho Mchunu; it was the first band in apartheid South Africa to consist of a white man and a black man. Johnny Clegg later formed Savuka and went to record four albums from 1986 to 1994 before disbanding.

Early Life

Johnny Clegg (7 June 1953 – 16 July 2019) was born Jonathan Paul Clegg in Bacup, Lancashire in England and and grew up in Zimbabwe, Zambia and South Africa. His mother was a cabaret and jazz singer and his step-father was a crime reporter.


Johnny Clegg died of pancreatic cancer on 16 July 2019 at his family home in Johannesburg aged 66 years old.

"It is with immense sadness that we confirm that Jonathan (Johnny) Clegg, OBE, OIS, succumbed to pancreatic cancer at the age of 66 on the afternoon of 16 July 2019 at his family home in Johannesburg, South Africa," family spokesperson Roddy Quinn shared the news in a statement.


Johnny Clegg was buried the following day, Wednesday 17 July 2019, in a private ceremony attended by family and some of his colleagues at Westpark Cemetery in Johannesburg.

"Johnny was buried yesterday (Wednesday) at 16h30, just with his family and some of the band members, it was a very private affair which is what the family requested and it was also Johnny’s request," Roddy Quin said.


  1. EWN, SA music legend Johnny Clegg dies, 05 August 2019
  2. Discogs, Johnny Clegg, 05 August 2019
  3. eNCA, Johnny Clegg laid to rest in private funeral, 05 August 2019
  4. Wits University, Johnny Clegg, 10 October 2019
  5. Mail & Guardian, Johnny Clegg in retrospect: It all began with Juluka, 10 October 2019
  6. SA History, Johnny Clegg, South African musician is born, 10 October 2019
  7. Daily Maverick, The dance ends for Johnny Clegg, SA’s beloved musical storyteller, 10 October 2019
  8. eNCA, WATCH: Johnny Clegg's final television interview, 10 October 2019
  9. The Guardian, Johnny Clegg, South African singer and activist, dies aged 66, 10 October 2019


Johnny Clegg Dancing.jpg
Johnny Clegg Singing.jpg
Johnny-Clegg performing.jpg
Johnny Clegg and Sipho Mchunu Juluka.jpg
Johnny-Clegg Zulu Dance.jpg

See Also