The Precious Pitter Patter Of “Pata Pata”

Honda has a cool TV ad campaign out for its new Crosstour vehicle. A couple of the spots feature fetching animation backgrounded by great songs. One is a jazztastic version of “Fever”, and the other I immediately recognized when I first heard it this weekend but couldn’t identify, and I certainly  wouldn’t’ve known it by its name and artist — owing to the fact that its infectious melody carried me waaaaaaaay back to a visual of me hearing it from the AM radio while in the passenger seat of my mom’s Chevy Corsair.

Meaning I was 3 years old, maybe 4. A time when performers’ names and song titles didn’t mean all that much to me.

In all honesty I can’t recall having heard it since, but there it was burbling out of the TV speakers into my ears for what may very well be the first time in 40-plus years, simultaneously making me bop in my seat and like a time machine transporting me back to a long-forgotten moment of joy in my toddlerhood.

So of course I blindly gooogled “Honda Crosstour Commercial Music” and ultimately found myself at the page within the automaker’s website where they were so good to identify the singer and song: Miriam Makeba, “Pata Pata.” Next of course I clicked over to Makeba’s Wikipedia page where I sadly learned she died at the age of 76 in November 2008, after having collapsed onstage during a concert in Italy following the performance of “Pata Pata,” which was her biggest international hit in a remarkable life and career.

I wasted little time finding the single available on and purchased it, and I share the joy of it with you: