We would be remiss if we let the day pass without mentioning the death of “Mama” Miriam Makeba.
I’ll admit, I didn’t know much about Makeba until Brian here at the Bitch offices mentioned her passing. Makeba was a South African anti-apartheid activist and singer, who had a hit in the States in 1967 with “Pata Pata.” She died onstage of a heart attack today in Italy at the age of 76, reportedly just minutes after she sang that very song. Makeba was one of those amazing, strong, fierce-ass women who come along rarely, and often at just the right time. Any commentary I might have about how amazing she was would be insufficient; the best way to understand her importance is to merely read about her life (go here and here to start). Similarly, any commentary on her immense talent is best done by letting you see for yourself, starting with this video of her singing “Soweto Blues.” Best of luck on the other side, Mama Africa.