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Parent to Child
- "Baby Mine" from Dumbo is a lullaby sung to Dumbo by his mother after she's been locked up for defending him from a group of rude boys.
Baby mine, don't you cry.
Baby mine, dry your eyes.
Rest your head close to my heart,
Never to part, baby of mine.
- "Deliver Us" from The Prince of Egypt.
- "You'll Be in My Heart" written by Phil Collins for Tarzan. The lyrics do not indicate what kind of love it is about, but in the movie it is sung to Tarzan by his surrogate mother Kala.
For one so smallYou seem so strongMy arms will hold youKeep you safe and warm.
- "Mother Knows Best" from Tangled combines this with Villain Song. She wants Rapunzel to think it's about her love for Rapunzel. It is actually meant to ruin Rapunzel's self-esteem and keep her emotionally dependent on Gothel and afraid of the outside world.
- In The Chipmunk Adventure, Eleanor sings "My Mother", a lullaby about a mother's love to the baby penguin that Eleanor smuggled aboard their hot-air balloon.
- Paul Simon's "Father and Daughter" from The Wild Thornberrys Movie, sung by a father promising to guard his daughter and watch her grow.
- Mr. Peabody & Sherman has a montage of the title characters' father-son dynamic set to the below-mentioned "Beautiful Boy".
- The villain song of The Lion King II: Simba's Pride is a lullaby from Zira to her son. However, it's more about her hate for Simba than her love for Kovu (who she wants to turn into a Tyke Bomb).
- In "Cheer Up, Charlie," from Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory, Charlie's mother sings about how her son's life will get better whether he finds a Golden Ticket or not. (See Theatre below for another adaptation's equivalent song!)
- In "Suddenly", a song added to the film version of Les Misérables, Valjean sings about how happy he is to adopt Cosette and vows to protect her.
- From Coraline, the "twitchy-witchy" song, in which Coraline's father expresses his affection by telling her (goofily) the things he'll do for her and the things he would never do.
- The original version of the lullaby from Holes encourages a child in spite of the troubles that that child will face.
Be strong, my weary wolfTurn around boldlyFly high, my baby birdMy angel, my only
- The "Soft Kitty" song in The Big Bang Theory, originally a lullaby sung to Sheldon Cooper by older female relatives (mother and mee-maw), which in times of stress he asks Penny to sing to him.
- In the The Odd Couple episode "The Paul Williams Story", Paul Williams writes a song based on the words Felix wanted to say to his runaway daughter. It brings them back together again.
- "I Love My Daughter" from Crazy Ex-Girlfriend. Unfortunately, it ends up coming out a bit pervier than intended.
- Stevie Wonder's "Isn't She Lovely?" is the singer's thoughts upon knowing he has a newborn daughter. Being blind, Stevie is unable to actually see is daughter, but he just knows she's beautiful anyway.
- "Beautiful Boy" by John Lennon, about his son Sean.
- Johnny Mercer wrote "Mandy Is Two" to celebrate his daughter's reaching her second year. One year later, he updated it as "Mandy Is Three."
- "Butterfly Kisses" by Bob Carlisle and others is about a little girl and her father's relationship as she grows up.
I couldn't ask God for more, man this is what love is.I know I gotta let her go, but I'll always rememberEvery hug in the morning and butterfly kisses...
- "Daddy's Little Girl" by Frankie J is about a girl trying desperately to hold on to her dying father.
- "The Hand that Rocks the Cradle" by The Smiths is by a father promising to protect his innocent son.
- "My Little Girl" by Tim McGraw
- "Mockingbird" by Eminem.
- "I'm Already There" by Lonestar. A man who's on the road calls up his family and tells his children that he's with them in spirit if not in fact.
- "I Think About You" - Collin Raye. A father bemoaning the sexualization of women in advertising, thinking about his young daughter.
- "I Hope You Dance" by Lee Ann Womack is a mother addressing her daughter.
- "In My Arms" by Plumb is a promise of protection and love for her son.
- "For Bobbie," written by John Denver, was retitled "For Baby" when Mary Travers heard it as something she could sing to her daughter.
I'll walk in the rain by your side,I'll cling to the warmth of your hand.I'll do anything to keep you satisfied,I'll love you more than anybody can.
- "Kooks", which David Bowie wrote soon after the birth of his son Zowie.
- "Sail to the Moon (Brush the Cobwebs Out of the Sky)" by Radiohead mixes this with a little Protest Song.
- "Sweet Child O' Mine", Guns N' Roses
- "Gracie", written by Ben Folds about his daughter.
- "Memphis, Tennessee" by Chuck Berry, as revealed at the end of the song. Until the last verse it sounds like he's singing about a girlfriend.
- "Mordred's Lullaby" by Heather Dale is the tragic and dysfunctional version.
- "A Woman's Song" by The Style Council - Paul Weller's band after The Jam - is about a mother comforting her baby, after having almost everything taken away from her and only sees consolation in said baby and his/her future.
- Sandra Boynton's "Snuggle Puppy", going by the illustrations, is one of these sung from a dog to his puppy.
Oh, snuggle puppy of mineEverything about you is especially fineI love what you are; I love what you doFuzzy little snuggle puppy, I love you!
- "Just the Two of Us" by Will Smith is about the father/son relationship.
- Heartland's "I Loved Her First."
But I loved her first
I held her first
And a place in my heart
Will always be hers
- Rod Stewart's "Forever Young", which he wrote for his children after realizing that touring was causing him to miss out on their lives.
- Paul Williams' "You and Me Against the World," as made famous by Helen Reddy.
Remember when the circus came to town
And you were frightened by the clown,
Wasn't it nice to be around someone that you knew,
Someone who was big and strong and looking out for
You and me against the world,
Sometimes it feels like you and me against the world
And for all the times we've cried I always felt that
God was on our side.
- Ed Sheeran's "Small Bump", in which the narrator sings a lullaby to his unborn child, promising to always love and protect them. The last few lines reveal that the mother miscarried.
- Céline Dion: "A New Day Has Come" and "Miracle."
- Andrew McMahon in the Wilderness: "Cecilia and the Satellite."
- Amy Grant's "Baby Baby", though the lyrics were vague enough for the video to spin it as a romantic song. (One of the laser-karaoke versions featured on Oddity Archive uses it over footage of a woman and a small child playing around in a park.)
- Aside from the abovementioned "You'll Be in My Heart", Phil Collins has written a couple of these for his own children.
- From But Seriously, there's "Father to Son", about a father offering advice (mostly dealing with women) to his son; Collins' son Simon was growing up around this time.
- Later, Testify features the song "Come With Me", in which the father promises to make the world that much brighter for his children. Collins first came up with the song as a lullaby not long after his daughter Lily was born, and later completed the song and put it on the album after his son Nicholas was born.
- "Babyfather" is about the joys of parenthood, and especially the devotion of fathers.
Oh child don't you know
Your daddy love come with a lifetime guarantee
- There's also "The Sweetest Gift", clearly dedicated to Sade Adu's child.
- "Babyfather" is about the joys of parenthood, and especially the devotion of fathers.
- "Remedy" by Adele, dedicated to her son.
- Bob Dylan's Planet Waves has one: "Forever Young", written for his kids.
- "Lovin' You" by Minnie Riperton is this to her then-infant daughter Maya Rudolph (yes, the same one from Saturday Night Live).
- "Philomena" by Thin Lizzy is singer Phil Lynott's tribute to his mother.
- Carrie (the musical version) has, as you might expect, a fairly twisted version. A few of them, in fact.
- "Father to Son" from the musical Falsettos. Divorced father singing to his son, giving him the advice to go his own way, and he'll be proud.
- In the short-lived 101 Dalmatians the Musical, one of the puppies asks her mother Missus if she's pretty, and Missus sings "My Sweet Child" in response, a song about how she loves her.
- "Mushnik and Son" from Little Shop of Horrors is Mushnik's "proposal" to adopt Seymour as his son.
- Kiss of the Spider Woman - Molina's mother sings "You Could Never Shame Me" to Molina about how she is still proud of him even though he went to jail.
- "My Child Will Forgive Me" from Parade is about a mother trying to cope with her guilt after her daughter is murdered.
- "This Time Tomorrow" from The Adventures of Tom Sawyer. Aunt Polly, watching her sleeping nephew, muses on time and growing older and promises him that
One thing is certainNo matter what you doThis time tomorrowI will still be loving you.
- From Sweeney Todd, the reprise of "Johanna". Played with, however, in that Todd muses on Johanna, but ultimately shows no desire to get back to her.
And though I'll think of you I guess, until the day I die,I think I miss you less and less as every day goes by.
- A couple verses of Cosette's part of "In My Life" from Les Misérables, asking about her past and why they live the way they do.
- Fantine also sings lovingly to a hallucination of Cosette at one point.
- In Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, "If Your Mother Were Here" is sung by Charlie's parents when he falls into a blue funk over the Golden Ticket search. Each parent thinks the other could do a better job of cheering him up, and both wish they could give the boy the life he deserves because he's such a light in their lives. In the process, the song also affirms their love for each other.
- "I'd Give My Life For You" from Miss Saigon. It's sung by a single mother to her toddler son, about how she loves him more than anything and would gladly give her life for him. She keeps her word at the end of the play.
- "The I Love You Song" from The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee is a particularly depressing one, since Olive's parents aren't actually there, and she's only imagining what she wishes they would tell her.
- "Min astrakan"/"Summer Rose" from Kristina from Duvemåla, sung by Kristina to her newborn son Danjel. The main theme of the song is actually about her love for Sweden, a country he will never see, and how she will tell him all about it but it's ripe with love and affection from mother to newborn.
- "Dear Theodosia" from Hamilton has Alexander Hamilton and Aaron Burr gushing over their respective children and promising to build a wonderful nation for them to grow up in.
- "I Can't Wait" sung by teenage parents Alice and Jimmy Ray to their unborn child, as they promise to stand by their child and each other forever. This doesn't exactly go as planned
- Unsurprisingly the subject of the non-interactive movie/game Do You Remember My Lullaby? (the titular lullaby can be heard here). Warning: bring tissues.
- In the first Darkwing Duck episode, "Darkly Dawns the Duck", Darkwing takes in a young girl called Gosalyn to prevent her from being snatched by the crime boss who killed her grandfather. She tells him about a lullaby her grandfather always used to sing her, "Little Girl Blue." Darkwing sings it, foreshadowing the father/daughter relationship that they're going to share for the rest of the series.
Child to Parent
Anime and Manga
- Blood-C has Saya Kisaragi with random mundane songs, who often sings about her much she loves her father. Considering she's voiced by Nana Mizuki... well, see below.
- On Glee, Kurt turns "I Wanna Hold Your Hand" into one of these for his father, who is in the hospital after a heart attack.
- "Simple Man" by Lynyrd Skynyrd is the singer's reminiscence about his mother giving loving advice to him when he was a boy.
All that I want for you my son, is to be satisfied.
- "Rock and Roll Lullaby" is B.J. Thomas's account of a man looking back on being raised by a teen mom.
- "The Best Day" by Taylor Swift is a daughter reminiscing about the good times she spent with her father and thanking him for it.
And I didn't know if you knew, so I'm taking this chance to sayThat I had the best day with you today
- "Headlights" by Eminem is an apology to his mother for all that he said about her.
- Nana Mizuki has "Shin'ai" and "Yume no Tsuzuki" as Grief Songs for her late father.
- St. Vincent's song for her mother, "I Prefer Your Love".
- "The Perfect Fan" by the Backstreet Boys
- "A Song for Mama" by Boyz II Men
- "Daddy's Hands" by Holly Dunn
- "Mama's Song" by Carrie Underwood
- "Mother Like Mine" by The Band Perry
- "Dance with my Father" by Luther Vandross
- "Love, Your Baby Girl" by Sugarland
- "Mama" by Spice Girls
- "Just the Way You Are" by Billy Joel was written for his mother.
- "Promise to Try" from Madonna's Like a Prayer.
- "Hey Mama" by Kanye West
- "Silver Thunderbird" by Marc Cohn is an ode to the singer's father. The silver Thunderbird in the title is the car that his father used to drive.
- A more tragic example is "The Living Years" by Mike + the Mechanics; the song is more of an "I wish my father and I could have put aside our differences while he was still alive" kind of song (it's especially sad considering that songwriters B. A. Robertson and Mike Rutherford had both had strained relationships with their then-recently-deceased fathers, and singer Paul Carrack had lost his own father as a child).
- "Father, Son" by Peter Gabriel, about a son who didn't have the best relationship with his father growing up, but still misses him (inspired by Gabriel's troubled relationship with his own father, but the two did reconcile before the latter's passing).
- "Julia" from The Beatles' The White Album, and John Lennon's solo effort "Mother" (from John Lennon/Plastic Ono Band), both written for his late mother.
- "Daddy Lessons" by Beyoncé, in which she reminisces about how her father taught her to be strong and independant.
- In Mame the title character's nephew Patrick tries to cheer her up by pointing out that she's "My Best Girl."
- In Phineas and Ferb, Candace tries to outdo her brothers in giving their mother the best birthday gift, only to find out they arranged for her to sing a song she had been working on as the party's grand finale. It's short, but incredibly sweet.
Mom it's your birthday
Thanks for all the care and love you give
Not to mention the meals
At times I get kinda nervous
And forget to tell you how I feel
- In A Goofy Movie, Goofy and Max sing the duet "Nobody Else But You", about how they still love each other even though they have trouble understanding each other.
- The verse in Love You Forever sung by the mother to her son. Inverted at the end when he sings it to her.
I'll love you foreverI'll like you for alwaysAs long as I'm livingMy baby/mommy you'll be
- "Cinderella" by Steven Curtis Chapman. A father sings about his daughter growing up, using the metaphor of Cinderella disappearing at midnight. Made much Harsher in Hindsight when the daughter he wrote the song for was tragically killed in a car accident while still a young child. Not only did his daughter never experience those coming of age landmarks in the song, but the entire theme of "All too soon, the clock will strike midnight, and she'll be gone," takes on a much darker and sadder meaning.
- "Ready, Set, Don't Go", a duet between Billy Ray and Miley Cyrus.
- Johnny Cash's "A Boy Named Sue" subverts the trope - the father named his son "Sue" out of misplaced love, to toughen him up and give him lots of fighting experience.
- "Lose My Life With You" from !HERO: The Rock Opera, which is a duet with Hero and his mother both singing about the main character having to give up the family life he had to become the prophesied Messiah.
- "I Don't Need Anything But You" from Annie is a duet between her and Daddy Warbucks about how glad they both are that they've been reunited and the adoption has gone ahead.
Together at lastTogether foreverWe're tying a knotThey never can severI don't need sunshine nowTo turn my skies to blueI don't need anything but you!
- Aspects of Love - George sings "The First Man You Remember" to his daughter, Jenny, and she sings it back to him. George initiates the song because Jenny is wearing her mother's dress.
- "Not While I'm Around" from Sweeney Todd is a particularly tragic example. Toby sings it to his adoptive mother Mrs. Lovett, who sings it back to him...right before telling Todd that He Knows Too Much and they'll have to kill him.
- Nothing's gonna harm youNothing's gonna harm you, no sir/TobyNot while I'm around.
- The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee features a song called, creatively enough, "The I Love You Song," reconciling Olive (who has abandonment issues) with her parents; her father works late and her mother is at an ashram in India.
- Billy Elliot has "The Letter" - literally a letter left to Billy by his dead mother, which is (heartbreakingly) sung aloud at one point. At the end of the musical, Billy writes a sort of farewell letter to the hallucination of his mother that's been following him around, using more-or-less the exact same words back at her.
And please Billy/Mammy,Know that I will always beProud to have known you.Proud that you were mine.Proud in everything.
- Steven Universe has a song called "Dear Old Dad", having Greg and Steven mainly reminiscing how Greg used to do things together as Greg stays in Steven's place to heal up his foot.