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10 Miriam Makeba’s Songs Every True Fan Sings Along To

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Miriam Makeba’s songs are still popular, 16 years after her passing. She was one of her generation’s biggest voices and her lasting legacy is a testament to her work. Makeba’s songs advocated for social and political change. 

As a result, the South African singer received the highest honors, becoming the first African to win a Grammy Award. Fondly referred to as Mama Afrika, she paved the way for black women and used her platform to influence change. Here’s a list of her songs.

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Aluta Continua

Miriam Makeba’s song Aluta Continua. Video Credit: Miriam Makeba Official Channel

Aluta continua is a popular phrase meaning the struggle continues. This is another one of Miriam Makeba’s songs that advocated for the end of the apartheid regime. She spoke against its injustices, calling for an end to the practice. Aluta Continua helped to mobilize the anti-apartheid movement. The song symbolizes the need to fight for justice and equality.

Africa Is Where My Heart Lies

Africa is Where My Heart Lies. Video Credit: Miriam Makeba Official Channel

Miriam Makeba expressed her love for Africa in the song Africa Is Where My Heart Lies. She celebrated the continent and shared her deep connection with it. She looked at the spiritual and emotional bond she’s experienced in Africa. This is the song you should play if you want to demonstrate your love for Africa. 

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Amampondo. Video Credit: Miriam Makeba Official Channel

Amampondo is a song that celebrates the Zulu culture. She popularized it with her powerful vocals and is one of her greatest hits. It’s a demonstration of the spirit of Zulu culture.

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The Click Song (Qongqothwane)

The Click Song. Video Credit: Miriam Makeba Official Channel

Makeba uses the Xhosa click in this song. It’s one of the most popular languages in South Africa. A group of singers and soloists perform the song which is also accompanied by percussion instruments. The Click Song portrays the story of a woman asking her suitor if he wants to marry her.

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Miriam Makeba’s song Umqokozo. Video Credit: Miriam Makeba – Topic

This is an upbeat song that celebrates the love of dancing and community. A group of singers perform the tune and traditional instruments like drums, whistles and rattles are used. It’s an appreciation for life. The song is mostly used in weddings and other celebratory occasions.

Ntyilo Ntyilo

Katlego Maboe performs Ntyilo Ntyilo. Video Credit: Express Show

Miriam Makeba popularized Rethabile Khumalo’s song Ntyilo Ntyilo. The song is about a bird that flies away and the singer asks it to deliver a message to their loved ones. This song helped introduce Xhosa music to the world.

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Pata Pata

Miriam Makeba performing Pata Pata. Video Credit:

Pata Pata is a song that encourages listeners to dance. Makeba sang it in isiZulu, describing a dance called Pata Pata. The song was produced in 1957 and became one of her hit songs. It’s a classic among South Africans showing their love for music and dance.

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Miriam Makeba performs Mbube live. Video Credit: Miriam Makeba Official Channel

Mbube which means lion sleeps tonight. captures the mysterious nature of the African wilderness. The song has been performed by several artists, but Makeba’s rendition is one of the most popular. It celebrates the rich culture and diversity of African people

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The song Malaika. Video Credit: Miriam Makeba Official Channel

Malaika is a timeless hit that still reverberates through the African continent. Malaika is a Swahili word for Angel, a romantic song that tells the song of a man who is in love with a woman he’s unable to marry because he’s poor. Even so, he promises to cherish her. Its gentleness is one of its appealing qualities.

Lakutshn Ilanga

Lakutshan Ilanga’s performance. Video Credit: Miriam Makeba – Topic

This is one of the most poignant Miriam Makeba’s songs. She captured the suffering of South Africans under the apartheid regime, stating that they couldn’t wait for better days. The song was a symbol of the most painful time in South African history. It’s a reminder of the country’s journey and why it needs to stay peaceful.

These are 10 Miriam Makeba’s songs that underline her legacy. She used her platform to fight for the rights of South Africans and the people at large. Miriam Makeba is an irreplaceable voice and for the time she lived, used her voice for the betterment of the world.

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Agnes Amondi
Agnes Amondi
Agnes Amondi is a sports enthusiast who enjoys sharing sports knowledge. Over the years, she has also written on different niches, and she now brings that experience at Spotcovery. She writes sports content and also, Arts & Culture, Recipe, Beauty and more.


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