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Announcing Known 0.7, named for Miriam Makeba

2 min read

When Erin and I were talking about releasing Known, we decided we wanted each major version to highlight artists and creatives. Our first ever open source release, 0.6, was named for Katherine Dunham.

The latest version of Known contains many improvements, including the ability to have unlimited accounts per social media service, as well as static pages, syndication to webhooks, and hundreds of fixes and enhancements.

I'm drawn to artists who use their unique voices for justice. Miram Makeba arguably introduced western mainstream audiences to African music, and used that platform to fight against the apartheid regime in South Africa. While in the United States, her South African passport was canceled, leaving her exiled from her country. She became a citizen of the world, and was granted honorary citizenship in ten countries.

A singer and international civil rights activist

Miriam Makeba's song Pata Pata made her famous in South Africa. Harry Belafonte helped her enter the United States, where she found further fame. They jointly won a Grammy for a live album, and performed at a birthday concert for President John F Kennedy, who insisted on meeting her afterwards. Her music was soulful and deeply rooted in her cultural history.

But she found that even in the United States, political ideals are not always compatible with a popular career. Her marriage to Black Panther Stokely Carmichael - who fought against institutional racism here - led to her losing her tours and record contracts. It wasn't until Paul Simon invited her on the Graceland tour decades later that the effective boycott against her music in the US ended. In the meantime, she lived in Guinea, and toured across Europe and Africa.

She was outspoken against South Africa's racist apartheid regime, publicly called for Nelson Mandela's release, and spoke at the United Nations on multiple occasions. It was Mandela who eventually invited her back to South Africa.

She passed away in 2008, after performing in a benefit concert in aid of fighting the Camorra, a long-standing criminal network in Naples.

Download Known 0.7 Makeba

You can get Known 0.7 in .zip and .tgz archives. Our source code is always available on GitHub.

If you prefer, you can get a free Known site on our fully-managed service.

TGIF everyone! We launched Known in open beta this week!