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April 15, 2021
South African Music

Send me (Thuma mina) with uncle Hugh Masekela


"I've got to be there"

My cause is beyond my table
My call past the mountains and valleys
The wastelands of my land need me there
And tsetse infected pastures yearn for my presence

The skies are blue, are they sad too I wonder?
Do they need me?
I hear the cries of little ones
Another day of nothing in their tummies will kill them

I hear the mothers and fathers helpless to help
They need me today more than ever
My own table cannot hold me back
My doorstep has to give way and let me go

There are doors to open there
And people to assure I am on my way
Shoulders to rub with the elite
Some grovelling to do with the powerful and rich

With the educated I have to reason
And wrestle with the mighty strong
Pride cannot stop me now
Nor can fear get on the way

On the back of the winds of change I've got to sail
Carrying the button the Mandelas of this world
Passed on to the young and fearless of this world

I have to run I cannot quit, not ever!
The finishing line's getting nearer
The task getting harder and harder as I near my goal
I try to catch a breath and I gasp at exacerbation's edge

The foe is strong
But the call, loud and clear
Children crying, some in numbers dying
Others silenced and numbed by fear

Women raped wearing all-black
Mourning husbands who went to work and never made it back
How can I pay heed to my own little ghosts?
How can I not go on?

Fail along the way I well may
But I'll try and try and try again
And rise from the dust when I fall
And run and run and run again…

I've got to be there
I've got to be there
I've got to be there!

By D. Senda

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Miriam Makeba with Hugh Masekela – Soweto Blues (South Africa freedom song)


Hugh Masekela – The Boy’s Doin’ It (1975)


SA Jazz Maestros Hugh Masekela and Jabu Nkosi Ashiko


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