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30 Mother’s Day Songs That Will Tug at Her Heartstrings

Sometimes the greatest Mother's Day gift is the gift of song. Crank up the volume and celebrate your mom with these heartfelt mom songs.

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Collage of album artwork from later in the, via (9)

Sweet mom songs your mother will adore

Music has so much power over our emotions. It can evoke happy memories as easily as sad ones, or simply offer nostalgia for another time and place. Similarly, Mother’s Day (which falls on Sunday, May 8, this year) can have the same effect on our feelings and sentiments. Just as a song might get us through a particularly difficult time, so can mom. In fact, there could be an entire category of music dedicated to mom songs. You know the ones—similar to a sweet Mother’s Day story, mom quote, or Mother’s Day poem, they tug at her heartstrings just as strongly as (if not more than) amazingly thoughtful Mother’s Day gifts. And hey, they likely bring a tear to your eye too (just like some Mother’s Day movies do).

What is a good song to dedicate to your mom?

A good song to dedicate to your mom is one that perfectly sums up how you feel about your special bond. It can be sentimental, fun, even humorous—just like your unique relationship. Need some inspiration? Check out these Mother’s Day songs to share with your mom or any of your favorite mamas this year. It’s a sentimental Mother’s Day idea they won’t forget!

"A Song For Mama" — Boyz II Menvia

“A Song for Mama” by Boyz II Men

Written and produced by Babyface and performed by 1990s music icons Boyz II Men, this mom song will let you tell your mama you love her with smooth four-part harmony. “A Song for Mama” peaked at number seven on Billboard’s Hot 100 chart on Valentine’s Day in 1998, making it one of the ten tracks the group has sent to the Top 10 over the course of their career. The song was featured on the soundtrack of the 1997 feature film Soul Food, which is fitting, as the movie’s message is all about family.

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"The Mother" — Brandi Carlilevia

“The Mother” by Brandi Carlile

This mom song is a direct musical hit to the heart. Singer/songwriter Brandi Carlile included “The Mother” on her 2017 album By the Way, I Forgive You, beautifully and melodically paying homage to everything a mother does for her child from the moment they’re brought into the world. Carlile, who herself became a mother in 2014, pens lyrics that are oh-so-relatable, especially for the new mom who’s experiencing a lot of sleepless nights with a newborn.

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"I Hope You Dance" — Lee Ann Womackvia

“I Hope You Dance” by Lee Ann Womack

With lyrics like “I hope you still feel small when you stand beside the ocean / Whenever one door closes I hope one more opens,” Lee Ann Womack’s sweeping inspirational ballad makes mothers everywhere teary-eyed. The track, released in 2000, touches on nearly every wish a parent has for their child’s future. Womack’s heartfelt lyrics paid off in more ways than simply being one of the most beloved mom songs: They earned her a Best Female Country Vocal Performance nomination at the 43rd Grammy Awards. If you’re looking for a last-minute Mother’s Day gift, dedicating this song to her can totally be part of the package.

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"Godspeed (Sweet Dreams)" — The Chicksvia

“Godspeed (Sweet Dreams)” by The Chicks

For the mom who wants to remember the days when her babies were actually babies, songwriter Radney M. Foster encapsulates the cherished moments of tucking in a young child in the lyrics to “Godspeed (Sweet Dreams).” “The rocket racer’s all tuckered out / Superman’s in pajamas on the couch / Goodnight moon, will find the mouse / And I love you,” croons lead singer Natalie Maines in this track featured on the band’s 2003 album Home. Singer and TV host Nick Lachey also sings his own version of this sweet song. Don’t forget to check out the best Mother’s Day celebration, based on your mom’s zodiac sign.

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"Don't Forget to Remember Me" — Carrie Underwoodvia

“Don’t Forget to Remember Me” by Carrie Underwood

Empty nesters will experience all the feels courtesy of Carrie Underwood’s “Don’t Forget to Remember Me.” The tune is all about striking out on your own but still needing mom’s support, wisdom, and reassurance. Just because you leave home doesn’t mean your mother stops worrying about you. Send mom some beautiful flowers on Mother’s Day to show just how much you appreciate her.

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"Mom" — Garth Brooksvia

“Mom” by Garth Brooks

Garth Brooks has had a lot of hits, but he holds “Mom” near and dear. When you hear him describe this beautiful mom song, written by Wynn Varble and Don Sampson, you’ll understand why. “It’s a conversation between God and this unborn child, [who is] about ready to go down to earth,” Brooks said during a Good Morning America appearance. “And when God describes what a mom is…whew, it kills me. It’s a beautiful song. I wish I’d written it…. You know I’m a mama’s boy.” Thinking of grandma on Mother’s Day too? Check out these great gifts for grandma that she’ll love.

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"Oh Mother" — Christina Aguileravia

“Oh Mother” by Christina Aguilera

Let’s face it, with her extraordinary singing voice, Christina Aguilera can bring life and emotion to any song. But the track “Oh Mother” from her 2008 Back to Basics album is particularly raw and heartfelt. Aguilera penned the tune for her own mother, Shelly Lorraine, who experienced the struggles of single motherhood while raising three children. The song incorporates some great lyrics that make beautiful mother-daughter quotes, too.

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"Hey Mama" — Kanye Westvia

“Hey Mama” by Kanye West

“Hey Mama,” written for Kayne West’s mother Donda, appeared on his album Late Registration and will tug at the heartstrings of any hip-hop enthusiast, particularly since Donda’s untimely passing in 2007. West has since been known to choke back tears before performing the song live. Bookmark these mother-son quotes to share with mom on Mother’s Day.

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"Mother" — Kacey Musgraves

“Mother” by Kacey Musgraves

In 2018, country singer Kacey Musgraves released her album “Golden Hour,” featuring a musical ode to her own mom called, quite simply, “Mother.” In an interview with A Taste of Country, the singer admitted she really had to go deep to pen the emotional tune, which instantly became one of the most perfect mom songs. “I just started thinking about all this crazy hurt that’s going on in the world, it was really heavy, and I was missing my mom at the same time,” she told the website. “I started thinking about the cycle of mothers and the fact that I was sitting there in Tennessee missing my mom who was sitting there in Texas missing her mom. It just goes on and on.” Make sure you bookmark these Mother’s Day baskets that will surely make her day.

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"Mama's Song" — Carrie Underwoodvia

“Mama’s Song” by Carrie Underwood

Yep, we’re hearing from Carrie Underwood yet again on this list, which we imagine would make her own mom very proud. The American Idol alum co-wrote this ode to moms everywhere with Kara DioGuardi, Marti Frederiksen, and Luke Laird, even offering her own mother a cameo in the accompanying music video. The song touches on a daughter’s praise for the way her mama raised her, offering confidence that her future looks bright as a confident, happily married woman. Looking for a Mother’s Day gift? These Amazon Mother’s Day gifts are great options.

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"Baby Mine" — Alison Kraussvia

“Baby Mine” by Alison Krauss

The title here says it all. “Baby Mine” is a tender message from a mother to her little one, with a sentiment that never leaves a parent no matter how old her child becomes. It reminds us of the quote that describes a child’s early years so well: “The days are long, but the years are short.” Alison Krauss’s rendition of the Betty Noyes tune is bound to make one a little reminiscent and, yes, a bit weepy too.

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"The Baby" — Blake Sheltonvia

“The Baby” by Blake Shelton

If you’ve ever read the children’s book Love You Forever (and, boy, what a tear-jerker that is), Blake Shelton’s ballad “The Baby” is almost like the musical version. In this mom song, Shelton muses about how his mother tells him that even when he turns 80, he’ll always be her baby. The tune takes the listener through the early days all the way to the mother’s passing, hitting all the emotional notes.

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"The Wish" — Bruce Springsteenvia

“The Wish” by Bruce Springsteen

The Boss has never shied away from writing songs that essentially sing like musical poetry, telling descriptive stories about his childhood and life. He wrote “The Wish” with his own mother, Adele Springsteen, in mind. This mom song may not bring on the tears, though, and that’s the way Bruce would want it. Just take a look at the track’s final lyrics: “This one’s for you, ma, let me come right out and say it / It’s overdue, but baby, if you’re looking for a sad song, well I ain’t gonna play it.” Play this song while your mom opens her DIY Mother’s Day gift this year.

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"In My Daughter's Eyes" — Martina McBridevia

“In My Daughter’s Eyes” by Martina McBride

Even on a day that might feel like a giant parenting fail, children often look to their mothers and fathers as if they are superhuman, capable of accomplishing anything. Martina McBride’s ballad “In My Daughter’s Eyes” reminds us of that but also notes that children make parents want to be better people. It was the second single off McBride’s 2003 album Martina, and while beloved by mamas everywhere, it only peaked at number 39 on the Billboard Hot 100. Looking to make mom laugh after listening to this song? Try cracking one of these hilarious mom jokes.

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"Dear Mama" — Tupac Shakurvia

“Dear Mama” by Tupac Shakur

As a tribute to his mom Afeni, Tupac Shakur penned “Dear Mama,” which details the late rapper’s rough upbringing and Afeni’s addiction to crack cocaine. Despite the harsh truths described on the track, ultimately Shakur is trying to express the unconditional love he had for his mother despite their impoverished and difficult situation. The single, featured on his album Me Against the World, was certified platinum in 1995.

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"Mother" — Sugarlandvia

“Mother” by Sugarland

From their 2018 album Bigger, Sugarland’s quintessential mom song, aptly titled “Mother,” really delivers. “One of the things about this song is, it’s so personal to everyone who listens, and we wanted to celebrate what we feel is so beautiful about mothers, what we had in our own mothers, and what we see as beautiful about that relationship and that unconditional, open-ended kind of love,” said Jennifer Nettles in an interview with The Boot. The song is a deep dive into all the ways a mother is there for you throughout your life.

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"The Perfect Fan" — The Backstreet Boysvia

“The Perfect Fan” by The Backstreet Boys

The Backstreet Boys may be best known for creating boy band pandemonium in the late 1990s, but not all their songs were directed at making their legions of female fans swoon. “The Perfect Fan,” in fact, is a shout-out to their own mothers, the women who raised them and supported them through the chaos and craziness of fame. The song appeared on 1999’s Millennium, and it’s probably safe to say that as BSB’s fan base has grown up and started families of their own, “The Perfect Fan” has even greater meaning.

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"Two of Us" — Louis Tomlinsonvia

“Two of Us” by Louis Tomlinson

One Direction’s Louis Tomlinson decided to use music as a way to help him come to terms with the death of his mother, Johannah Deakin, at the age of 43. “It was something I needed to get off my chest,” he said in an interview with Radio 1 Newsbeat. “I used to lean on my mum for a lot of things—anytime I needed advice on something, she would be the first call I made.” The result is an absolutely beautiful ode to Deakin and a song quite relatable to anyone who has lost their mother.

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"The Best Day" — Taylor Swiftvia

“The Best Day” by Taylor Swift

Try as a mom might to do the best for her children, it’s rare she’s treated with acknowledgment. Taylor Swift penned “The Best Day” to make sure her own mother knew how much she appreciates her love and support. “I had this idea that I wanted to play it for her for Christmas,” Swift said in a Big Machine Records press release. “So when I got the track I synced up all these home videos from when I was a little kid to go along with the song, like a music video, and played it for her on Christmas Eve, and she was crying her eyes out.”

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"Mom" — Meghan Trainorvia

“Mom” by Meghan Trainor

This is likely the only song on the list that actually features an appearance by the artist’s own mother. Meghan Trainor’s mom, Kelli, can be heard on the song “Mom,” as Trainor incorporated a small portion of a phone conversation shared by the two. That only makes the sweet tune even more special. While the song is a shoutout from one daughter to her mother, its lyrics and message really translate to all the moms out there looking out for their little ones, even those who are grown. If you’re looking for some mom humor, these mom memes are sure to make mom chuckle.

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"Like My Mother Does" — Lauren Alainavia

“Like My Mother Does” by Lauren Alaina

“Like My Mother Does” has actually been recorded by three different artists, but Lauren Alaina’s take is likely the most high-profile, as it was the track she would have performed had she taken home the grand prize on her season of American Idol (she was voted runner-up). The song is a true love letter to mothers who lead their families with unconditional love and unending support. Yes, this one will make you cry. Read on to find out all the superhuman talents that moms possess.

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Mothers Day Songs Slipping Through My Fingers By AbbaVia

“Slipping Through My Fingers” by ABBA

ABBA’s given us timeless pop hits like “Dancing Queen” and “Mamma Mia,” but they’ve also graced us with some sentimental songs, like “Slipping Through My Fingers.” Listen along as the Swedish pop group sings about a child growing up too fast and time passing way too quickly—things mothers are all too familiar with. And don’t forget to bookmark these love songs for when you’re in need of a romantic playlist.

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Mothers Day Songs Where You Lead I Will Follow By Carole KingVia

“Where You Lead, I Will Follow” by Carole King

Gilmore Girls fans will recognize this song immediately—it’s the theme song to the beloved mother-daughter teen show. “Where You Lead, I Will Follow” by Carole King is a sweet tune all mothers can relate to: wherever your child goes, you will follow and be there for them. It’s a great song that shows mom just how much your special bond means to you.

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Mothers Day Songs Mama By Spice GirlsVia

“Mama” by The Spice Girls

The Spice Girls deliver a wonderful pop ballad with “Mama,” a song about a child realizing just how special their relationship with their mother is—even if it was hard to see when they were young. Grab the tissues for this one!

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Mothers Day Songs Mother Like Mine By The Band PerryVia

“Mother Like Mine” by The Band Perry

This sweet country tune will have your mom smiling in no time. The Band Perry pays tribute to all the strong mamas in the world and everything they do with “Mother Like Mine.” It’s a wonderful song that perfectly captures how much your mom means to you. If you want to honor your mom’s strength, share one of these powerful strength quotes with her.

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Mothers Day Songs Mom By Earth Wind And FireVia

“Mom” by Earth, Wind & Fire

If you’re looking for a soulful yet sentimental song to dedicate to mom, put on “Mom” by Earth, Wind & Fire. It’s a beautiful tribute to a mother who’s always been there for you and loved you unconditionally. Don’t be surprised if you and mom get up and dance to this tune.

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Mothers Day Songs You Raise Me Up By Josh GrobanVia

“You Raise Me Up” by Josh Groban

The beauty of Josh Groban’s “You Raise Me Up” is that it can have different meanings for everyone. If your mom is the person who raises you up and makes you believe you can accomplish anything, dedicate this wonderful ballad to her on Mother’s Day. It’s sure to pull at her heartstrings in the most beautiful way. These love quotes pull at the heartstrings too!

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Mothers Day Songs In My Life By The BeatlesVia

“In My Life” by The Beatles

“In My Life” by The Beatles is another song that can have different meanings to those who listen. Some may dedicate it to their spouse, whereas others may dedicate it to a friend. It’s a simply gorgeous song about loving one person with all your heart—sounds perfect for mom, right?

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Mothers Day Songs Superwoman By Alicia KeysVia

“Superwoman” by Alicia Keys

This inspirational track for women everywhere is a great song to dedicate to mom. Alicia Keys’s “Superwoman” is soulful, powerful, and sends a very clear message to mom: She’s a superwoman, and you’re so proud to have her in your life.

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Mothers Day Songs You Are The Sunshine Of My Life By Stevie WonderVia

“You Are the Sunshine of My Life” by Stevie Wonder

Playing “You Are the Sunshine of My Life” by Stevie Wonder for your mom sends a clear message: She truly lights up your world. You two can listen in sweet sentiment as Wonder croons about that special light in your life.

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