1st April 2015: Miriam Makeba – Khawuleza

Language – Xhosa (one of the official languages of South Africa)

Translation – Hurry (Miriam Makeba explains the meaning at the start of the song)

The wonderful Miriam Makeba on a TV programme from 1966.  She sings two songs, ‘Khawuleza’ and ‘Baxabene Oxamu’, and there is an interview in between the songs. She speaks so beautifully and gives an insight into life in South Africa and why she left, and her subsequent exile.  I find it amazing how someone who was obviously treated so badly in her own country can speak so calmly about it.  To be honest, I am quite tearful watching this.  I imagine it must have been absolutely amazing to see her perform live.  One of the beautiful things about music is that it lives on after the person who created it, beyond where they lived, and it doesn’t just speak to those people immediately around that performer.  So, I feel lucky that despite being filmed in 1966, I can see this performance today and be as moved, I am sure, as the people who saw it at the time.



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