‘Mama Africa’ Miriam Makeba Dies (1932-2008)


Legendary South African singer Miriam Makeba died of a heart attack late Sunday night after a benefit concert in Castel Volturno, a small town in Italy.

The Grammy-awarded Makeba was known as “Mama Africa” and was one of the earliest and best ambassadors for African music around the world. She was born in 1932 in Prospect Township outside of Johannesburg, and began developing her powerful vocals based on the American singer Ella Fitzgerald. As she developed her style, American jazz remained integral her music, which blended in aural elements from her native Xhosa language and traditional African music.

“I kept my culture. I kept the music of my roots. Through my music I became this voice and image of Africa and the people without even realising,” she said in her biography.

This is crazy. I remember watching her on that episode of Cosby Show and i didn’t know who she was. I wish I took the time to do some research back then.




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