Hip Hop’s Tribute: 10 Mom-Appreciating Songs For Your Playlists

Posted on May 12th, 2018
Staff Editor

Rappers showing love to their mom is always heart-warming. In honor of Mother’s Day, here’s a list of classic mom-loving songs that have transcended through the years and a few new additions. This Sunday, play these songs while your showering the women in your life with love and appreciation.

10. Tupac’s “Dear Mama”

After the world premiere of Poetic Justice, Tupac released a heartfelt open letter of appreciation to his mom, Afeni Shakur. He talks about moments in his childhood where they prevailed through life’s struggles. This song came a year and a half before his tragic death and still became a classic mothers appreciation anthem.

9. Rick Ross Ft. Cee-Lo Green “Smile Mama, Smile”

“Smile Mama, Smile” finds Young Renzel reflecting on the importance of family.


8. Jay-Z “Smile” ft. Gloria Carter

Gloria Carter is a regular on Hov’s studio albums, appearing on songs such as December 4th (2003). On Smile, Jay-Z talks about growing up knowing his mom was lesbian and hiding it from peers. In the song, he admits to crying tears of joy when Gloria finally came out and fell in love.

7. Kanye “Hey Mama”

In happier times, Kanye dedicated  “Hey Mama” to his late mom Donda West. On the tear jerking song, Kanye reflects on how hard his mom worked to keep him safe, educated, and healthy and how thankful he is. In 2005, he jumped on stage and serenaded Donda with a Hey Mama performance on Oprah’s daytime show.

6. Chance the Rapper – “Hey Ma”

Chance the Rapper dedicates the last song on his debut mixtape, 10 day, to all the women who took care of him in Chicago. On “Hey Ma” the Chicago rapper paints a relatable picture of “it takes a village” to raise a child.

5. J.Cole – “Apparently”

The young rapper admits to his selfishness to the only human who always forgives unconditionally.

4. Ghostface Killah Feat. Mary J. Blige – “All That I Got Is You”

Ghostface Killah speaks on growing up poor and all he had to overcome to get where he is now. He thanks his mother for all of that.

3. Eminem – “Headlights”

Eminem rarely ever holds back on his records. Headlights is an open apology to his mother after his unfiltered tribute to her on “Cleaning out my Closet” (2002). He was angry then, but seems to have forgiven her and himself on this track.

2. Nas – “Dance”

Nas is known for wearing his heart in his sleeve in his raps. On Dance, a tribute to his late mother, the rapper is sad about not being able to dance with her anymore. Grab your tissues, as Nas takes you down memory lane when his mom was alive.

1. Drake – “Look What You’ve Done”

Drake, is back again with his heartfelt, reminiscent lyrics for his mom on Look What You’ve Done. This track appears on Take Care, arguably one of his most vulnerable projects. The song is soulful highlight to his mother Sandi, his grandmother Evelyn, and Uncle Steve.

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