Masekela’s memoir hits SA in October
It’s been a long time coming for fans of Hugh Masekela who want an update on his life. This year, Masekela, in partnership with Jacana Media, will finally release Still Grazing: The Musical Journey of Hugh Masekela more than a decade after its international publication in 2004.
“I don’t bite my tongue in this book, so I hope you’ve got some bail money,” said Masekela on Tuesday, when he signed the contract at Jacana’s offices in Joburg.
And while some readers may be expecting a memoir about the life of a musician, they’ll have to brace themselves for a few political stories dating back to Masekela’s struggle against apartheid.
The book’s rights were held by Masekela’s label, Sony Records, which sold them to Penguin Random House. The rights were only recently released back to him.
“People are always asking where they can get the book and now I have something to tell them,” he said.
Above all, Masekela, known for his often controversial opinions, hopes his words will give readers courage.
“I think we have become dumbed down – not by freedom itself, but by the hype of being free,” he said.
“I want people to take courage from what they read here – that is the value I’m most concerned about,” he said.
But the release of the book has hit a bit of a speed bump. Masekela recently returned from a European tour, where his luggage was stolen on a train, along with 56 pages he had written.
“I lost 56 pages, my expensive pairs of shoes, three of my favourite ties, my lint remover – all the important things,” he joked, warning the audience to guard against travelling with an expensive suitcase.
Still Grazing should be on the shelves by October.