'No Pata Pata': Angelique Kidjo redoes Makeba classic for COVID-19 awareness

Unicef has re-released ‘Pata Pata’, the world-famous song by late music icon Miriam Makeba.

Miriam Makeba and Angelique Kidjo. Picture: Supplied.

JOHANNESBURG - In the spirit of sending positive vibes around the coronavirus, Unicef Goodwill Ambassador Angélique Kidjo has put a twist on an old classic tune to spread awareness.

Unicef has re-released Pata Pata, the world-famous song by late music icon Miriam Makeba.

The reworked version has no alteration to chords or syllables, but several changes to the lyrics. It includes lines such
as: "It's a time to sit it out!" This is ‘no-pata-pata... Stay at home and wait it out …..We need to keep our hands clean ….So ‘no-pata pata’...Don’t touch your face, keep distance please."

Makeba herself was a United Nations goodwill ambassador who worked on hunger, HIV and domestic violence, as well as a civil rights activist.

The song has particular resonance for Kidjo whose friend, Afro-Jazz icon Manu Dibango, died earlier this month
from coronavirus. “Manu inspired me. Miriam inspired me. And Pata Pata gave me hope, said Kidjo.

“We all know what needs to be done, but we also know how much communities are suffering. Pata Pata has always
been there for people at a time of struggle. I hope it helps once more. And I hope from our confined spaces we can dance once more.”