Songs from Around the World: Breaking down Bele Mama

Songs from Around the World: Breaking down Bele Mama

Today, let’s dive into some music from another part of the world. Start with listening to the audio clip below: 

If you would like to try singing it yourself, here are the lyrics: 

Bele Mama, Bele Mama eh

Bele Mama, Bele Mama eh

Bele Mama, Bele Mama 

Bele Mama, Bele Mama

Bele Mama, Bele Mama eh

The song Bele Mama is from Africa, but there are a few different ideas on where it could be from, and what language it is in. Some people believe the song is from West Africa, and the words mean “Call Mama.” Others believe the lyrics are Mbele Mama, which means “Long time ago, Mama!” 

For Parents/Teachers 

If you have different groups of children singing this song, with each group starting after the previous group, you can create an effect called a ‘canon’ or a ‘round’, where you hear harmony, or different notes at the same time, which sound pleasant together. Try this in class! See how many different groups you can have, and how much space you can have between each group. 


When children learn to sing in different languages, they have a chance to explore other cultures from around the world. Music is a gateway to exploring new perspectives, identifying new languages, and more. To get your child started, learn more about the SaPa in Schools program. Get in touch with us here.

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