mater mea - Celebrating Motherhood and Women of Color

7 Great Songs About Being A Mom

7 Great Songs About Being a Mom

Words: Gina Cherelus

From Minnie Riperton to Beyoncé, these singing moms did what they do best to show how much they love their children.

All artists use experiences from their own lives to inform their work. And for the many performers who’ve experienced motherhood, creating songs that acknowledge their newfound roles allows them to celebrate their loved ones while giving fans a glimpse into their personal lives. We list seven songs by some of our favorite singers that celebrate being a mom.

Sade, "The Sweetest Gift"

After an eight-year hiatus, Sade released this track following the birth of her daughter Ila Adu with former boyfriend and music producer Bob Morgan in 1995. Featured on “Lovers Rock” in 2000, the singers prays to the moon to protect Ila and in result, promises her the sweetest gift. This can easily be considered one of the best lullabies from a mother to her daughter.  

Beyoncé, "Blue"

Though “Drunk in Love” and “Partition” are considered the breakout songs on Beyonce’s self-titled fifth studio album, this song proclaiming her undying love for her firstborn is the real winner in our opinion. Just hearing Blue’s voice at the end, adorably mispronouncing her mother’s name and asking for her father will have you smiling.

Whitney Houston, “My Love Is Your Love”

Despite the various meanings derived from this ballad, Houston has performed this song on tour in 1999 with her daughter, Bobbi Kristina, who is also featured on this platinum hit.  The reggae-inspired song, produced and written by Wyclef Jean and Jerry Duplessis, was made to commemorate Houston’s eternal love for her daughter and how it will last, despite the struggles that they may face.

Alicia Keys, “Speechless”

Keys released this single dedicated to her son Egypt just a few months after he was born in 2010. With her husband Swizz Beats producing the song, Keys finds herself tongue-tied, unable to formulate lyrics that can accurately express her happiness with her son now in her life. (“I’m just speechless baby / The poet in me has gone away”). Despite being speechless, she definitely said it best.

Lauryn Hill, “To Zion”

Motherhood can be tough. Hill’s decision to keep her unborn child just as her career was about to take off (“‘Look at your career they said’ / ‘Lauryn, baby, use your head’”), is what makes this Grammy-award winning song so powerful. A circumstance many women can relate to, Hill listened to her heart and inevitably found her joy. 

Kelis, “Song for the Baby”

This song was featured on Kelis’ electric-pop album “Flesh Tones,” which was recorded while the singer was pregnant with her only son Knight. The album, which was dedicated to motherhood and survival, ended with “this letter” to her child. Kelis offers her son life lessons that aren’t “sugar coated … / 'Cause I wanna make you equipped for the best / And I can't always be here to rescue you when life gets crazy.” But just like any good lesson, Kelis’ words of wisdom all come from a place of love.

Minnie Riperton, “Lovin’ You”

While the late singer was pregnant with her daughter, future comedienne Maya Rudolph, in 1971, her husband, Richard Rudolph, began formulating the melody and lyrics for this song while living in their house in Gainesville, Florida. What started as a song that stayed within their home, gradually grew into the chart-topping, melodic hit that still attracts listeners decades later. With help from producer Stevie Wonder, the track became a number-one hit across the world. Before her untimely death from breast cancer at just 31 years old, Minnie dedicated this ode to love to her daughter, whose name can be heard at the song’s end.