Renowned Cape Town Musician, Zayn Adam passed away at the age of 67 in Grootes Schuur on Sunday, after suffering from a heart attack earlier in the week. The performer is known in the world over for his contributions to the South African jazz scene, even more so for his own musical journey as a coloured boy during the apartheid era in Cape Town.
A relative, sister in-law Inshaaf Adam said Adam, while meticulous in many ways, carried a compassionate and gentle soul that impacted everyone he came in contact with.
“As his eldest brother often spent most of his time away working, Zayn often stepped in as the ‘boeta’ and made sure that everyone was kept in check. He was a strict father who always ensured that his sons knew what was expected from them, especially with regards to religion,” Inshaaf said.
Zayn Adam became a household name in Cape Town during the 1970’s when he first took to the stage with his then band, the Pacific Express. The band went on to take the South African music scene by storm, creating classics that will go on to become the foundation of music in the Cape. Adams’ performances then went on to an international platform, winning the broader community with his sweet melodious compositions of ‘Give A Little Love’.
In an interview with Emo Adams, Musical Director and Leader of the band ‘Take Note’, Sean Vries, said Adam could only be described as a musical inspiration and Icon. Having performed on SA’s biggest stages, Vries said Adam, through his musical nuances, changed his and his fellow band members’ careers in a positive way.
“When Uncle Zayn took to the stage during our last performance together, he only performed for the last part of the entire ensemble due to his shortness of breath, but he managed to get the audience members on their feet, swaying to his music. That ultimately got the only standing ovation of the entire evening. That is the man and musician I got to know and respect,” Vries explained.
Adam was laid to rest on Monday afternoon. Family and friends along with local celebrities and even some political figures, including the Mayor of Cape Town, Patricia De Lille, all paid respects to a the family of great, historical figure in Cape Town. VOC (Ra’eesah Isaacs)