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Miriam Makeba

Biography

Southern African Grammy Award-winning singer and civil legal rights activist who worked contrary to the apartheid and released the strike “Pata Pata.” Her mom was jailed for illegally offering an liquor, umqombothi. She was an associate from the Manhattan Brothers, a jazz group. She earned a Grammy Prize for An Evening with Belafonte/Makeba. She wedded Sonny Pilay in 1959, after that Hugh Masekela in 1964, and lastly Stokely Carmichael in Apr 1968. She partook within the Nelson Mandela 70th Birthday Tribute in 1988.

Quick Facts


Full Name Miriam Makeba
Date Of Birth March 4, 1932
Died November 9, 2008, Castel Volturno, Italy
Place Of Birth Johannesburg, South Africa
Profession World Music Singer
Nationality South African
Spouse Stokely Carmichael, Hugh Masekela, Sonny Pilay
Children Bongi Makeba
Parents Caswell Makeba, Christina Makeba
Awards Grammy Award for Best Ethnic or Traditional Folk Recording, Otto Hahn Peace Medal in Gold, Polar Music Prize for Popular Music, MTV Africa Music Legend Award
Music Groups Manhattan Brothers
Nominations Grammy Award for Best New Artist, Grammy Award for Best Female Pop Vocal Performance
Movies Mama Africa, Paul Simon and Friends, Amandla! A Revolution in Four Part Harmony, Sarafina!, Have You Seen Drum Recently?, Come Back, Africa, Voices of Sarafina!, Amok
Star Sign Pisces

  • Facts
  • Filmography
  • Awards
  • Salaries
  • Quotes
  • Trademarks
  • Pictures

#Fact
1Mother of Sal Masekela.
2She was a UN representative for Guinea, for which she was presented with the Dag Hammarskjöld Peace Prize in 1986.
3A Johannesburg club singer who became an important voice for the anti-apartheid struggle in South Africa, she paid a high price for her activism. While she was out of the country, the government revoked her passport, so she could not attend her mother's funeral.
4First African woman to win a Grammy.
5American-born (with one Jamaican parent) folk singer/activist. Harry Belafonte first saw her in the independent film Come Back, Africa (1959) and arranged for both her U.S. concert debut and a recording contract with RCA Victor. An album they recorded together, "An Evening with Belefonte/Makeba" (RCA Victor: 1965), went on to win a Grammy for Best Traditional Folk Recording. Other U.S. albums, on RCA and Reprise, include "Miriam Makeba," "The Voice of Africa," "In Concert at Philharmonic Hall," and "Pata Pata." She was married to musician Hugh Masekela and activist Stokely Carmichael (later Kwame Ture).
6Her real name, as she clarifies in the 29 February 1960 issue of Time magazine is: Zensile Makeba Qgwashu Nguvama Yiketheli Nxgowa Bantana Balomzi Xa Ufnu Ubajabulisa Ubaphekeli Mbiza Yotshwala Sithi Xa Saku Qgiba Ukutja Sithathe Izitsha Sizi Khabe Singama Lawu Singama Qgwashu Singama Nqamla Nqgithi. "The reason for its length, " Ms. Makeba writes, "is that every child takes the first name of all his male ancestors. Often following the first name is a descriptive word or two, telling about the character of ther person, making a true African name somewhat like a story." (Letter reprinted in the 9 March 1998 issue of Time.)


Soundtrack

Soundtrack

TitleYearStatusCharacter
Half of a Yellow Sun2013performer: "Naughty Little Flea"
Aya of Yop City2013performer: "L'enfant et la gazelle"
Independent Lens2012TV Series documentary performer - 1 episode
Mama Africa2011Documentary performer: "Soweto Blues", "Qogothwane The Click Song", "Pata Pata"
Sing Your Song2011Documentary performer: "Into Yam", "Love Tastes Like Strawberries", "Malayisha", "Nongoongod To Those We Love" / writer: "Into Yam", "Malayisha", "Nongoongod To Those We Love"
Soul Power2008Documentary performer: "The Click Song"
The Deal2008/Iperformer: "Pata Pata" / writer: "Pata Pata"
Joe Strummer: The Future Is Unwritten2007Documentary performer: "Pata Pata"
Bobby2006performer: "Pata Pata" / writer: "Pata Pata"
Transamerica2005performer: "Jol'inkomo"
Veronica Mars2004TV Series 1 episode
Otto - Der Katastrofenfilm2000lyrics: "Dummasack" / music: "Dummasack"
Tohuwabohu1997-1998TV Series performer - 2 episodes
When We Were Kings1996Documentary performer: "Am Am Pondo" / writer: "Am Am Pondo"
Sarafina!1992performer: "Thank You Mama"
A Warm December1973lyrics: "NONQONQO" / music: "NONQONQO"

Actress

Actress

TitleYearStatusCharacter
Sarafina!1992Angelina
Have You Seen Drum Recently?1989
Amok1983Joséphine Sempala

Composer

Composer

TitleYearStatusCharacter
Mama Africa2011Documentary
Help2009/IShort
Amok1983

Music Department

Music Department

TitleYearStatusCharacter
Help2009/IShort musician: vocals

Thanks

Thanks

TitleYearStatusCharacter
Mama Africa2011Documentary in memory of

Self

Self

TitleYearStatusCharacter
Amandla! A Revolution in Four Part Harmony2002DocumentaryHerself
Sacred Sounds2000DocumentaryHerself
When We Were Kings1996DocumentaryHerself
African Footsteps1995TV Series documentaryHerself - Interviewee
Children of Africa1993TV SpecialHerself
American Masters1993TV Series documentaryHerself
The Cosby Show1991TV SeriesHerself
Voices of Sarafina!1988DocumentaryHerself
Freedomfest: Nelson Mandela's 70th Birthday Celebratation1988TV Special documentaryHerself
Ebony/Jet Showcase1988TV SeriesHerself
Paul Simon, Graceland: The African Concert1987TV Movie documentaryHerself
Àngel Casas Show1984TV SeriesHerself
Numéro 11979TV SeriesHerself
The Mike Douglas Show1970TV SeriesHerself
The David Frost Show1969-1970TV SeriesHerself
Festival panafricain d'Alger1969DocumentaryHerself
Miriam Makeba: We Will Win1969TV MovieHerself
The Joey Bishop Show1968TV SeriesHerself
The Woody Woodbury Show1968TV SeriesHerself
The Ed Sullivan Show1962-1967TV SeriesSinger / Herself - Singer / Folk Singer
International Cabaret1967TV SeriesHerself
The Hollywood Palace1964-1965TV SeriesHerself / Herself - Singer
The Garry Moore Show1964TV SeriesHerself
Today1960-1963TV SeriesHerself
Look Up and Live1961TV SeriesHerself
The Steve Allen Plymouth Show1959TV SeriesHerself - Singer
Come Back, Africa1959DocumentaryMiriam

Archive Footage

Archive Footage

TitleYearStatusCharacter
Livicated2015Documentary post-productionHerself
Mama Africa2011DocumentaryHerself
Sing Your Song2011DocumentaryHerself (uncredited)
Soul Power2008DocumentaryHerself
La imagen de tu vida2006TV SeriesHerself

Won awards

Won awards

YearAwardCeremonyNominationMovieAward shared with
2001Taormina Arte AwardTaormina International Film Festival

Nominated awards

Nominated awards

YearAwardCeremonyNominationMovieAward shared with
1961GrammyGrammy AwardsBest New Artist


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