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Zimbabwe: Cool Crooners Founder Member, Abel Sithole, Dies


One of the of the founding members of arguably country’s leading jazz band, the Cool Crooners, passed on last weekend.

The Bulawayo based group lost its lead vocalist, Abel Sithole, on Saturday.

Sithole, who was 81-years-old, passed away at the Mpilo Central Hospital where he had been admitted.

Family spokesperson Sithokozile Sithole was quoted in the state media saying the void left by her uncle would be difficult to fill.

“The void left by my uncle would be difficult to fill as he was a unifier. Burial arrangements are still on going and he is likely to be buried on Friday,” said Sithole.

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The group recorded three studio albums Blue Sky, in 2001, Ibhulugwe Lami, in 2002, and Isatilo in 2005.

Ibhulugwe Lami catapulted them to stardom with the group becoming a permanent feature at jazz festivals in the country and abroad.

The band was formed in the 1950s after two groups – the Cool Four and the Golden Delicious Rhythm Crooners – morphed into one group.

Sithole, Lucky Thodhlana and the late Ben Gumbo, were the founder members of the group. Gumbo was later replaced by Timothy Mkandla.

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