Texas Music Presents: Happy Mother’s Day!

A Texas country/Americana/singer-songwriter salute to all the mamas who made us, love us, teach us, and keep us in check ... or at least try to.

Photo courtesy Kacey Musgraves, "Mother."

Where would we be without our mothers?

It’s a trick question, obviously. Because without mothers, we wouldn’t be, period. And neither would our mothers, for that matter. At the bare minimum, we all need a mother just to bring us into the world and drop us off at life’s starting line. And after that, we all need someone to carry, feed, and look out for us for as long as we’re lucky to have them, even long after we think we’re old enough and capable enough to make it on our own. And given that we can all be rotten, unruly little monsters, anyone with the strength and patience to handle the demands of the mother gig definitely deserves at the very least one day of rest, reverence, and frankly anything else they desire, plus a nice greeting card, of course. A veritable “Mother’s Day,” if you will. And what would Mother’s Day be without a very special Texas Music curated playlist of mom-themed songs by Texas singers and songwriters?

Well that’s a trick question, too, because that really wouldn’t be any kind of Mother’s Day at all, would it?

So what kinda Texas mom songs made our list? All kinds! We’ve got tender-hearted, unabashedly earnest mom songs by Kacey Musgraves, Lucinda Williams, William Clark Green, Susan Gibson, and Sara Hickman, and for a little balance we’ve got the loving but bittersweet kick of Terri Hendrix’s sassy “Mi Madre.” We’ve got classic country-style mom songs by Sunny Sweeney and Brennen Leigh (covering Iris DeMent and Lefty Frizzell, respectively), and we’ve got Natalie Maines (solo) covering Pink Floyd’s admittedly somewhat unsettling “Mother.” Later, we’ve also got Maines sweetly serenading her own children alongside her fellow mama Chicks Martie Maguire and Emily Strayer, followed by Kelly Willis with a dreamy lullaby of her own. We’ve got the Highwomen (featuring Texas’ own Amanda Shires and Maren Morris) singing about needing a much-needed mother’s timeout, just for the sake of sanity. We’ve got shoutouts-to-Mom mom songs and “Oops, sorry, Mom” mom songs by Ryan Bingham, Rodney Crowell, Miranda Lambert and Ruthie Foster. We’ve got a hip-shaking mom song about Elvis Presley loving his mom by Jimmy LaFave, the Old 97’s taking a Merle Haggard’s “Mama Tried” for a ride, and a delightful Willie Nelson mom song that’s not the one about not letting babies grow up to be cowboys. And for our “obligatory encore?” Why, it’s the mother of all Texas mom songs: “Up Against the Wall (Redneck Mother),” as sung by Ray Wylie Hubbard himself.

Happy Mother’s Day!

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