Momma Mixtape: Bring Back The Funk


My mom has always been there for me since day one,


and one of the best ways we share our bond is through music. She introduced me to the world of opera, took me to my first concert, and even encouraged me to pursue a career in music. So I figure one of the best ways to illustrate my mother is through a playlist. Here’s 5 songs that give me the best memories of my mom, because without her, I wouldn’t be where I am today.

#1 Gold Digger -Kanye West ft. Jamie Foxx

I know, when you first read this, you’re like what? This song reminds you of your MOM?? Well, it definitely reminds me of all the road trips my mom and I would do together to Washington D.C to pick my brother up from college. This song would always come up on the way the since it was the 2005-2008 time period. It was always one of the highlights of the drive, me and her singing along to that song (it was even specific that she’d rap Ye’s verses and I’d sing Jamie Foxx’s part).

#2 Solid– Ashford and Simpson

Now this song reminds me of my mom for a multitude of reasons. For one, we went to a concert in Philly and Valerie Simpson was actually performing this song in tribute of her late husband, Nick Ashford. Everyone in the audience was singing along with her; this was one of their most famous songs, and there was no way we were going to let her perform it on her own. It was such a bittersweet moment. The second reason is that the summer before I started college, I noticed my mom’s expansive vinyl collection. Solid was part of it. I wanted to be able to bring something to remind me of home, so I took that album and framed it in my first college dorm. It was definitely a centerpiece in my decor, and always reminded me of my mom.

#3 Drummer Boy– Jackson 5

Around the holidays, my mom always plays the Jackson 5 Christmas album, and she told me that one of her favorite songs was The Little Drummer Boy. After listening to the song, I see why. It is such a happy, peppy beat that is warm and inviting. This is the perfect song for Christmas around my family. Every time I hear this song, I think of when I’m helping my mom prepare the Christmas dinner, putting wrapped presents under the tree, and the genuine joy this time of year brings for my family.

#4 I’m Every Woman – Whitney Houston

Do your parents ever hear a nostalgic song and tell you “your generation doesn’t know anything about this song” and just get up and dance? Well, this is that type of song for my mom. Every time I hear this song, I think about her doing her little two step and singing along to this song. My mom has always kept me up to date with old school and new school (believe it or not my mom listens to Jay Z, Kanye, Sza  etc). This bridge between old school and new school music has inspired the diverse taste in music I have now. This song also just reminds  how powerful of a woman my mom is.

#5 Habenera from Bizet’s Carmen -Denyce Graves, soprano

Hearing this song always reminds me of how cultured my mom is. She is the person who introduced me to the world of opera. This singer, Denyce Graves, is an African American operatic soprano, and the first opera singer I ever saw perform. I think it was important that my mom exposed me to this when I was so little. Seeing a grown black woman sing classical music was such an inspiring thing for me, especially seeing how white washed the classical music sphere is today. It made me see at a young age that opera is something that I CAN do. Ever since that performance my mom took me to, I’ve been working towards the goal of being an operatic singer. And I can’t thank my mom enough for paving the way to my aspirations.

This selection of music is all diverse because my mom is a very versatile woman. She could listen to almost any genre of music, old generation or new and find something to love about it. If you want to check out the full playlist, check it out on Spotify!