Last Updated
Thursday 20 October 2016, 17:30 pm.
Hundreds converge to bid farewell to Stampore

Fallen folk guitarist Malefo Stampore Mokha might have not been a rich man but he surely was famous.
By Staff Writer Fri 21 Oct 2016, 11:00 am (GMT +2)
Mmegi Online :: Hundreds converge to bid farewell to Stampore

His funeral in Molepolole on Saturday attracted high profile personalities, politicians , musicians,  businesspeople, his many fans, as well as scores of ordinary Batswana who converged to pay the celebrated musician their last respects.The vehicle models that lined the dusty road leading towards his humble home Borakanelo ward ranged from the Toyota Corrolla sedans to Range Rover SUVs, testimony that the legendary artist was loved by many, across generations and classes.

Among the huge crowd was legislator Gaotlhaetse Matlhabaphiri, Bakwena leader Kgosi Kgari, events promoter Zenzele Hirschfield, veteran musicians, Taolo Moshaga, Alfredo Mosimanegape,  Socca Moruakgomo, Masilonyana Radinoga, Phempheretlhe Pheto and Banjo Mosele.The young urban influenced players included Vee, Vomit, T.H.A.B.O., Mosako and Kast among others.While the news of his death was a real emotional shock, his send-off was less emotional and a somewhat "cold" affair.As a music man one would have expected the crowd which had a large contingent of musicians to be vibrating with song but sadly, the hymns lacked zeal.But as an exceptional musician, something special was bound to happen at the departed star's funeral.  It is only at a funeral of a man with a high cultural inclination  that people would go against the norm of singing a soft hymn while the coffin is lowered into the grave.At Stampore's funeral Kaone Mahuma recited a poem, leading the pallbearers towards the musician's final resting place.Perhaps that could be identified as the only enlightening moment signalling the celebration of Stampore's life rather than the mourning of his passing.

Banjo Mosele told Showtime at the funeral that the famed Tswana guitarist was a rare breed of a musician."He was an exceptional talent when it comes to playing Tswana guitar, very innovative as well, which is why he played his four-string guitar on the reverse," Mosele said.According to Mosele, he and a group of other local guitarists had been planning

a compilation album which would include the late musician but it might prove difficult now that he has departed."He had his own way of playing a guitar which is something we needed because it would give it a totally different feel.  Now he has left a gap which might prove difficult to fill.  Stampore was in the mould of legends such as Ratsie Setlhako, history is there to tell," he said.Although he expressed concern that guitarists of Stampore's calibre might never emerge again in Botswana, he was hopeful that the musician's products such as Solly Sebotso would carry the baton.

Stampore's prodigy Sebotso concurred with Moshaga that the late musician was a rare artist.  Sebotso said he was happy to have learnt from such a guitarist as Stampore."Many of us have learnt a lot from him.  He had set a trend in the way he held the guitar and played it on the reverse and that cannot be replaced but at least he left a good legacy.There are those of us who are growing to reach the same level," Sebotso said.Veteran radio personality and Dipina Le Maboko host Mogatusi Kwapa described Stampore as a talented composer who varied his lines very well."Each of his original compositions had a different story to tell.  They were based on real events that took place like the song he did when the Thebephatshwa airbase was built," Kwapa said.Stampore was born into an artistic family.  His father Sebine Mokha was a Segaba player while his elder brother Kota-e-shwele is also a reputable guitar player, whose songs have also dominated Radio Botswana's Dipina Le Maboko.Stampore, who was born in 1961 in Molepolole, died last week after being admitted to Scottish Livingstone hospital in Molepolole following a sugar diabetes diagnosis a week earlier.  He is survived by his wife and three brothers.

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