Ask a singer how they would like to “go” and they’d probably say… on stage… performing my heart out… singing my last song.
Well that’s how Miriam Makeba “went”. The South African singer who wooed the world with her sultry voice but was banned from her own country for more than 30 years under apartheid, died after collapsing on stage in Italy. She was 76.
She was physically on exile but her voice has reached deep within the physical confines of her country… she lived in her countrymen’s hearts.
Makeba collapsed on stage Sunday night after singing one of her most famous hits, “Pata Pata,” her family said in a statement. Her grandson, Nelson Lumumba Lee, was with her as well as her longtime friend, Italian promoter Roberto Meglioli.
“Whilst this great lady was alive she would say: ‘I will sing until the last day of my life,’ ” the statement said.