The 100 Best Mother-Son Dance Songs of All Time

These tunes will give you all the feels.
Hannah Nowack The Knot Senior Weddings Editor
by
Hannah Nowack
Hannah Nowack The Knot Senior Weddings Editor
Hannah Nowack
Senior Editor, Weddings
  • Hannah writes and edits articles for The Knot Worldwide, with a focus on real wedding coverage.
  • Hannah has a passion for DE&I and plays an integral role in ensuring The Knot content highlights all voices and all love stories.
  • Prior to The Knot Worldwide, Hannah was the Social Media Editor at Martha Stewart Weddings.
Updated Mar 10, 2022

Weddings are about celebrating a new marriage, while also generally paying homage to the families that helped bring the to-be-weds to where they are today. That's why special dances, from a first dance to a mother-son or father-daughter dance are often included in the wedding reception. They're a fun way to spotlight special people amid the rest of the evening's dancing and festivities. According to The Knot 2021 Real Weddings Study, 81% of couples choose to share a special dance with a parent during their wedding reception.

However, sorting through songs for a mother-son wedding dance and settling on the best wedding song to serve as the backdrop to that moment can be especially difficult. From the lyrics to the tempo and beat, and even what style of dancing you'll partake in, a lot of factors affect which mother-son dance song is the best song for your wedding. But fret not, we've gathered the 100 best mother-son dance songs of all time to make the task simpler for you. Whether you want a modern bop of a country ballad, there's a good song for a mother-son dance in the curated playlist below that's sure to fit your wedding plans wonderfully. Meanwhile, if you're in the throes of wedding planning and looking for great father-daughter dance songs, we've got the perfect roundup of tunes for you. Plus, we chatted with top wedding experts to answer must-know frequently asked questions about mother-son dances so you everything there is to know about this special parent dance.

In this story:

Mother-Son Dance Frequently Asked Questions

Beyond combing through songs for a mother-son wedding dance, there are a few other considerations that go into planning this special moment at the wedding, such as understanding the ideal timing for the dance. A few of our favorite top wedding pros dish on all the FAQs about mother-son dance songs so you no longer have to wonder what to do.

What is the mother-son dance?

The mother-son wedding dance is a chance for the mother of the groom and her son to share a special moment on the dance floor during the wedding reception. "The whole day, your mom has watched the young man that she raised grow up, and find that person that is their new #1," explains wedding photographer Vanessa Hicks of Vanessa Hicks Photography. "But, during the mother-son dance, she has a moment with her baby."

Beyond the mother of the groom and the groom, there may be other VIP mother-son relationships on display at the wedding. Whether that's a grandmother who's in attendance or even a son that the bride may have. If that's the case, talk with your wedding planner about having an additional mother-son dance to honor that special relationship.

When does the mother-son dance happen?

"For traditional receptions, the mother-son dance typically happens shortly after the couple share their first dance as newlyweds," says wedding planner Bisola Esiemokhai of Event Design by BE. "For receptions that have a plated dinner, the mother-son dance can also take place in between courses or shortly after the cutting of the cake to help the flow of the program and keep guests engaged." Wedding expert Charlotte Ricard-Quesada of La Fête concurs, noting that "in many cases, it happens at the tail-end of the latter and therefore is wedged in between this and everyone joining the dance floor."

How long should a mother-son dance be?

Weddings are not just formal occasions so you can have a lot of fun injecting your personality into the day; especially during the reception. The personalities of both the groom and the mother of the groom should be reflected in the song selected. Ultimately, traditions shouldn't apply here. For instance, if the groom or his mom share a carefree personality and they love to dance, a fast song interlaced with choreography may be more fitting.

The significance of the song for either the groom or the mother is equally as important. There may be a song that evokes very fond childhood memories, holds a special meaning that captures their relationship or be a tune they share a love for. Instead of picking a current or popular song, consider picking a song that ensures that the mother-son dance is a sentimental and memorable moment.

What's Important When Selecting a Song?

Ricard-Quesada advises that to-be-weds "pick a song that means something to the both of you. Is it the song your mom used to always have in the car and you would sing it together? Is it her own first dance song? There is no right or wrong answer, it needs to feel right to you both and have that special meaning."

Slow Mother-Son Dance Songs

Most commonly, mothers of the groom will share a slow dance with their son at the reception. These songs are especially good if you envision a relaxed tempo to accompany your mother-son wedding dance

1. "A Song for My Son," by Mikki Viereck

Lyrics you'll love: "I don't know where/ The time has gone/ Since those little boy days/ Doesn't seem that long/ Yet here you are/ It's your wedding day"

2. "Bridge Over Troubled Water," by Simon & Garfunkel

Lyrics you'll love: "When tears are in your eyes, I will dry them all, all/ I'm on your side, oh, when times get rough"

3. "Do I Make You Proud," by Taylor Hicks

Lyrics you'll love: "You were the one/ The one to guide me through/ Now I can see/ And I believe/ It's only just beginning"

4. "Forever Young," by Bob Dylan

Lyrics you'll love: "May your heart always be joyful/ May your song always be sung/ May you stay forever young"

5. "Greatest Love of All," by Whitney Houston

Lyrics you'll love: "Because the greatest/ Love of all is happening to me/ I found the greatest/ Love of all inside of me"

6. "Wind Beneath My Wings," by Bette Midler

Lyrics you'll love: "Did you ever know that you're my hero/ And everything I would like to be/ I can fly higher than an eagle/ for you are the wind beneath my wings"

7. "Beautiful Boy," by John Lennon

Lyrics you'll love: "Before you go to sleep/ Say a little prayer/ Every day in every way, it's getting better and better"

8. "Mother and Child Reunion," by Paul Simon

Lyrics you'll love: "Oh, the mother and child reunion/ Is only a motion away"

9. "Mom," by Lucero

Lyrics you'll love: "With time, all things must change/ The road, it might take its own course/ But at its end, we're still your boys"

10. "Mother," by Pink Floyd

Lyrics you'll love: "Mama's gonna keep baby healthy and clean/ ooh baby, ooh baby, ooh baby/ You'll always be baby to me"

11. "My Love, My Life," by ABBA

Lyrics you'll love: "You are still my love and my life/ Still my one and only"

12. "Simple Man," by Lynyrd Skynyrd

Lyrics you'll love: "You'll find a woman and you'll find love/ And don't forget, son, there is someone up above"

13. "Stand by Me," by Ben E. King

Lyrics you'll love: "No I won't be afraid, no I won't be afraid/ Just as long as you stand, stand by me"

14. "The First Lady in My Life," by Paul Todd

Lyrics you'll love: "You were my best friend, my inspiration/ The one I looked up to/ Hey Mom, the first lady in my life was you"

15. "The First Time Ever I Saw Your Face," by Roberta Flack

Lyrics you'll love: "The first time ever I saw your face/ I thought the sun rose in your eyes/ And the moon and the stars were the gifts you gave/ to the dark and the endless skies"

16. "You Raise Me Up," by Josh Groban

Lyrics you'll love: "You raise me up, so I can stand on mountains/ You raise me up to walk on stormy seas/ I am strong I am on your shoulders/ You raise me up to more than I can be"

17. "Because You Loved Me," by Celine Dion

Lyrics you'll love: "I'll be waiting for you/ Here inside my heart"

18. "Mamma," by Achille Togliani

Lyrics you'll love: "Quanto ti volgio bene/ Queste parole d'amore che ti sospira il mio cuore forse non s'usano più" (Italian)

"How much I love you/ These words of love that my heart longs for are perhaps no longer used"

19 "Your Mother and Mine," by Kathryn Beaumont

Lyrics you'll love: "Well a mother, a real mother, is the most wonderful person in the world/ She's the angel voice that bids you goodnight/ Kisses your cheek, whispers sleep tight"

20. "A Mother's Love," by MAJOR.

Lyrics you'll love: "Can't nothing beat my mother's love/ Can't nothing shake what she's made of/ Shе's made like Heavеns up above/ Can't nothing beat my mother's love"

21. "The Way You Look Tonight," by Frank Sinatra

Lyrics you'll love: "Some day, when I'm awfully low/ When the world is cold/ I will feel a glow just thinking of you/ And the way you look tonight"

22. "Unforgettable," by Nat King Cole

Lyrics you'll love: "Unforgettable/ That's what you are/ Unforgettable/ Though near or far"

23. "Can You Feel The Love Tonight," by Elton John

Lyrics you'll love: "And can you feel the love tonight?/ It is where we are/ It's enough for this wide-eyed wanderer/ That we got this far"

Upbeat Mother-Son Dance Songs

If you and your mom want something peppier than a slow dance, then an upbeat mother-son wedding song with a fast tempo is the way to go. Ultimately, you should choose a song that resonates with you and that you feel comfortable dancing to, whether it's fast or slow.

24. "How Sweet It Is (to Be Loved by You)," by James Taylor

Lyrics you'll love: "How sweet it is to be loved by you, feels so fine/ How sweet it is to be loved by you"

25. "Loves Me Like a Rock," by Paul Simon

Lyrics you'll love: "Oh, my mama loves, she loves me/ She get down on her knees and hug me/ Oh she loves me like a rock/ She rock me like the rock of ages/ And loves me"

26. "Mother," by Danzig

Lyrics you'll love: "Mother/ Tell your children not to hold my hand/ Tell your children not to understand/ Oh mother"

27. "Dear Mom & Dad," by Us the Duo

Lyrics you'll love: "You've proven nothing but the best for me, and I thank you/ I'll spend my whole life trying to repay the favor/ You've given everything to me that I will need to know"

28. "Days Like This," by Van Morrison

Lyrics you'll love: "When everything falls into place like the flick of a switch/ Well my mama told me there'll be days like this"

29. "Mama," by Adekunle Gold

Lyrics you'll love: "From the depth of my heart/ I wrote this one for you/ You are my super hero/ You fight a lot for me/ You gave me everything o mama"

30. "Child of Mine," by Carole King

Lyrics you'll love: "Oh yes sweet darling/ So glad you are a child of mine"

31. "Mama Said," by The Shirelles

Lyrics you'll love: "Mama said there'll be days like this/ There'll be days like this, my mama said"

32. "Hit the Road Jack," by Ray Charles

Lyrics you'll love: "Hit the road Jack and don't you come back/ No more, no more, no more, no more"

33. "I'll Always Love My Mama," by The Intruders

Lyrics you'll love: "I'll always love my mama/ She's my favorite girl/ I'll always love my mama/ She brought me in this world"

Country Mother-Son Dance Songs

These country songs are a great choice for a mother-son wedding dance at a rustic wedding. Or even if you're hosting a modern wedding but just love country music, then one of these country mother-son wedding dance songs would be a perfect choice for the special moment.

34. "The Best Day (Taylor's Version)," by Taylor Swift

Lyrics you'll love: "I know you were on my side/ Even when I was wrong/ And I love your giving me your eyes/ Staying back and watching me shine"

35. "There You'll Be," by Faith Hill

Lyrics you'll love: "When I look back on these days/ I'll look and see your face/ You're right there for me"

36. "Mommas," by The Swon Brothers

Lyrics you'll love: "We don't call 'em enough, love 'em enough/ But we'd all be lost without them/ We don't thank 'em enough, hug 'em enough/ Even when they move our mountains/ They'll pick you up and dust you off/ And catch the tears if they start fallin'/ You better love 'em while you got 'em/ Thank God for Mommas"

37. "Like My Mother Does," by Lauren Alaina

Lyrics you'll love: "She sees everybody/ For who they really are/ I'm so thankful for her guidance/ She helped me get this far"

38. "I Hope You Dance," by Lee Ann Womack

Lyrics you'll love: "I hope you never fear those mountains in the distance/ Never settle for the path of least resistance/ Livin' might mean takin' chances, but they're worth takin'"

39. "Sweet Child of Mine," by Sheryl Crow

Lyrics you'll love: "He takes me away to that special place/ And if I stare too long, I'd probably break down and cry/ Whoa, oh, oh, sweet child o' mine"

40. "Humble and Kind," by Tim McGraw

Lyrics you'll love: "Hold the door, say 'please,' say 'thank you/ Don't steal, don't cheat, and don't lie/ I know you got mountains to climb/ But always stay humble and kind?

41. "He Gets That From Me," by Reba McEntire

Lyrics you'll love: "His early morning attitude/ You have to drag him outta bed/ Only frosted flakes will do/ He gets that from me"

42. "Don't Blink," by Kenny Chesney

Lyrics you'll love: "Don't blink, you just might miss/ Your babies growing like mine did/ Turning into moms and dads"

43. "Never Alone," by Lady and Jim Brickman

Lyrics you'll love: "May your tears come from laughing, you find friends worth having/ As every year passes, they mean more than gold/ May you win and stay humble, smile more than grumble/ And know when you stumble, you're never alone"

44. "Let Them Be Little," by Billy Dean

Lyrics you'll love: "I can remember when you fit in the palm of my hand./ Felt so good in it, no bigger than a minute./ How it amazes me, you're changing with every blink./ Faster than a flower blooms they grow up all too soon."

45. "Thank You Mom," by Rob Dunivan

Lyrics you'll love: "I would like to thank you mom in this special way/ It must have been because of you they called it mother's day/ Yes, I would like to thank you mom/ For all you gave to me/ And let you know just how proud a son can really be"

46. "Through The Years," by Kenny Rogers

Lyrics you'll love: "Through the years, you've never let me down/ You turned my life around, the sweetest days I've found"

47. "All to You," by Scott Keo

Lyrics you'll love: "There's no way to thank you, for all that you have done/ No matter how old I get I will always be your son"

48. "Angels," by Randy Travis

Lyrics you'll love: "She counted your fingers and toes and thanked god you were whole/ Son you oughta know who loved you first, that's right"

49. "You're Gonna Be," by Reba McEntire

Lyrics you'll love: "You're gonna fly with every dream you chase/ You're gonna cry but know that that's okay/ Sometimes life's not fair but if you hang in there"

50. "Then They Do," by Trace Atkins

Lyrics you'll love: "Then they do/ And that's how it is/ It's just quiet in the morning/ Can't believe how much you miss/ All they do/ And all they did/ You want all the dreams they've dreamed of to come true/ Then they do"

51. "Roots and Wings," by Anne Murray

Lyrics you'll love: "Roots and wings/ Gifts of love/ Holding me strong/ And lifting me up/ Child of the earth and a rider of the wind/ A dreamer of dreams caught in between/ Roots and wings"

52. "Never Alone," by Lady A

Lyrics you'll love: "Wherever you fly/ This isn't goodbye/ My love will follow you, stay with you/ Baby, you're never alone"

53. "Mother," by Sugarland

Lyrics you'll love: "She's your mother, you love her/ There won't be another/ place like her again that you call home/ She stands here to help you/ there's nothing she won't do"

54. "Mama's Song," by Carrie Underwood

Lyrics you'll love: "Mama, there's no way you'll ever lose me/ And giving me away is not goodbye/ As you watch me walk down to my future/ I hope tears of joy are in your eyes"

55. "Mother Like Mine," by The Band Perry

Lyrics you'll love: "She's the sky that holds the clouds/she the lady of our house/ we need her, but no one more than me"

56. "My Wish," by Rascal Flatts

Lyrics you'll love: "This is my wish (my wish for you)/ I hope you know somebody loves you (my wish for you)/ May all your dreams stay big (my wish for you)"

Modern Mother-Son Dance Songs

Often when people think of mother-son dance songs they may wrongly assume that the song has to be an old-timer ballad that hit the billboards when their parents were young. While there are many old songs that work great for parents dances at weddings, don't stop yourself from considering a modern bop.

57. "Turn to You," Justin Bieber

Lyrics you'll love: "So when you're lost and you're tired/ When you're broken in two/ Let my love take you higher/ 'Cause I still turn to you"

58. "Mom," by Meghan Trainor, feat. Kelli Trainor

Lyrics you'll love: "You might have a mom, she might be the bomb/ But ain't nobody got a mom like mine/ Her love's 'til the end, she's my best friend/ Ain't nobody got a mom like mine"

59. "Time After Time," by Cyndi Lauper

Lyrics you'll love: "If you're lost you can look and you will find me/ Time after time/ If you fall, I will catch you, I'll be waiting/ Time after time"

60. "Love is a Verb," by John Mayer

Lyrics you'll love: "When you show me love/ I don't need your words/ Yeah love ain't a thing/ Love is a verb"

61. "Go On," by Jack Johnson

Lyrics you'll love: "Just go on/ There's still so many things/ I wanna say to you/ Go on/ Just go on/ We're bound by blood that's moving/ From the moment that we start"

62. "Sweetest Devotion," by Adele

Lyrics you'll love: "The sweetest devotion/ Hitting me like an explosion/ All of my life, I've been frozen/ The sweetest devotion I've ever known"

63. "Mama Said," by Lukas Graham

Lyrics you'll love: "When mama said that is was okay/ Mama said that it was quite alright/ Our kind of people had a bed for the night/ And it was okay"

64. "A Song for Mama," by Boyz II Men

Lyrics you'll love: "Mama, Mama you know I love you/ You know I love you/ Mama, Mama you're the queen of my heart"

65. "I Got You," by Ciara

Lyrics you'll love: "Hush little baby don't you cry/ Momma's gonna love you all your life/ And if you ever need a friend/ Momma's right there till the very end"

66. "Everything," by Matthew John

Lyrics you'll love: "You taught me everything/ How to tell what's wrong from right/ You gave me everything/ Made me who I am inside/ And even though I'm different/ I'm still the man you thought I'd be"

67. "Mama's Hand," by Queen Naija

Lyrics you'll love: "And I promise to give you everything that I have/ There's not a dream in this world you can't accomplish or grasp/ I will cross any ocean before I let you land/ Just hold on to mama's hand and never let it go"

68. "Home," by Phillip Phillips

Lyrics you'll love: "Just know you're not alone/ 'Cause I'm gonna make this place your home"

69. "River," by Leon Bridges

Lyrics you'll love: "In my darkness I remember/ Momma's words reoccur to me/ "Surrender to the good Lord/ And he'll wipe your slate clean"

70. "93 Million Miles," by Jason Mraz

Lyrics you'll love: "Oh, my beautiful mother/ She told me, son in life you're gonna go far/ If you do it right you'll love where you are/ Just know/ Wherever you go/ You can always come home"

71. "Drops of Jupiter," by Train

Lyrics you'll love: "Tell me/ Did you fall from a shooting star/ One without a permanent scar/ And did you miss me while you were/ Looking for yourself out there?"

Classic Rock Mother-Son Wedding Songs

Classic rock is one of those truly timeless genres. There are so many great classic rock songs that can be used throughout the wedding day, but these curated options would be an especially big hit for the mother-son wedding dance.

72. "I'll Stand By You," The Pretenders

Lyrics you'll love: "I'll stand by you/ Won't let nobody hurt you/ I'll stand by you/ Take me in, into your darkest hour/ And I'll never desert you/ I'll stand by you"

73. "Forever Young," The Pretenders

Lyrics you'll love: "May you grow up to be righteous/ May you grow up to be true/ May you always know the truth/ And see the lights surrounding you"

74. "Teach Your Children," Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young

Lyrics you'll love: "And so, please help (To teach your children)? Them with your youth (What you believe in)/ They seek the truth (Make a world)/ Before they can die (That we can live in)"

75. "When You Need Me," Bruce Springsteen

Lyrics you'll love: "If you miss me, I'll be there/ To brush the sunlight from your hair/ I'll be there to guide you when trouble walks beside you/ If you need me, I'll be there"

76. "Thank You Mom," Good Charlotte

Lyrics you'll love: "I'll always thank you/ More than you would know/ Than I could ever show/ And I love you/ I'll always love you"

77. "You'll Be in My Heart," by Phil Collins

Lyrics you'll love: "Cause you'll be in my heart/Yes, you'll be in my heart/From this day on/ Now and forever more"

78. "Just the Way You Are," by Billy Joel

Lyrics you'll love: "I said I love you, that's forever/ And this I promise from the heart/ I couldn't love you any better/ I love you just the way you are"

79. "Sweet Child O' Mine," by Guns N' Roses

Lyrics you'll love: "I'd hate to look into those eyes and see an ounce of pain"

80. "Have I Told You Lately," by Rod Stewart

Lyrics you'll love: "You fill my heart with gladness/ Take away all my sadness/ Ease my troubles, that's what you do"

81. "Forever Young," by Rod Stewart

Lyrics you'll love: "May the good Lord be with you down every road you roam/ And may sunshine and happiness surround you when you're far from home/ And my you grow to be proud, dignified and true/ And do unto others as you'd have done to you/ Be courageous and be brave/ And in my heart you'll always stay"

82. "Wildflowers," by Tom Petty

Lyrics you'll love: "You belong among the wildflowers/ You belong in a boat out at sea/ You belong with your love on your arm/ You belong somewhere you feel free"

83. "Thank You For Loving Me," by Bon Jovi

Lyrics you'll love: "Thank you for loving me/ For being my eyes/ When I couldn't see/ For parting my lips/ When I couldn't breathe/ Thank you for loving me"

84. "Letter To My Mother," Edwin McCain

Lyrics you'll love: "I love you, Mama/ But I want to tell her too/ Is that her little boy still loves you"

85. "Landslide," by Fleetwood Mac

Lyrics you'll love: "Well, I've been afraid of changin'/ 'Cause I've built my life around you/ But time makes you bolder/ Even children get older/ And I'm getting older too"

86. "All You Need Is Love" by The Beatles

Lyrics you'll love: "All you need is love/ All you need is love/ All you need is love, love/ Love is all you need"

87. "Here Comes The Sun," by The Beatles

Lyrics you'll love: "Little darling/ It feels like years since it's been here/ Here comes the sun/ Here comes the sun/ And I say, It's all right"

Short Mother-Son Dance Songs

If you're worried about the mother-son song going on for too long, select a tune that's under three minutes. While you can always have your band or DJ cut a longer song short, there options are already short to begin with.

88. "God Only Knows," by The Beach Boys, 2:51

Lyrics you'll love: "You never need to doubt it/ I'll make you so sure about it/ God only knows what I'd be without you"

89. "What a Wonderful World," by Louis Armstrong, 2:19

Lyrics you'll love: "I see trees of green, red roses too/ I see them bloom, for me and for you/ And I think to myself/ What a wonderful world"

90. "You Are the Sunshine of My Life," by Stevie Wonder, 2:58

Lyrics you'll love: "You are the sunshine of my life/ That's why I'll always be around/ You are the apple of my eye/ Forever you'll stay in my heart"

91. "House of Gold," by Twenty One Pilots, 2:43

Lyrics you'll love: "She asked me, 'Son, when I grow old/ Will you buy me a house of gold?/ And when your father turns to stone/ Will you take care of me?'/ I will make you queen of everything you see"

92. "In My Life," by The Beatles, 2:26

Lyrics you'll love: "Though I know I'll never lose affection/ For people and things that went before/ I know I'll often stop and think about them/ In my life, I'll love you more"

Artists release new songs daily, which means your options for a mother-son wedding dance song are always expanding. Here are a few tunes that just hit the scene in 2022 and are worth considering for a mother-son dance.

93. "Times Like This," by Mat Kearney feat. Devon Gilfillian, 2022

Lyrics you'll love: "'Cause we got love for times like this/ Times where nothing else makes sense No, I don't know what comes next But we got love for times like this"

94. "Love Me Like I Am," by for King & Country, 2022

Lyrics you'll love: "It's amazing that You can/ Love me like I am/ And even when I can't/ You still love me as I am"

95. "Love Something," by Blessing Offor, 2022

Lyrics you'll love: "You let 'em know, you hold 'em close/ You let 'em wrap around your soul/ You let 'em know, you hold 'em close/ But it's not enough so you let them go/ That's when you love something"

96. "Good Idea," by JJ Heller, 2022

Lyrics you'll love: "If you're doubting/ Second guessing/ I have always been a true believer/ There was never any question/ You have always been a good idea"

Instrumental Mother-Son Dance Songs

Mother-son songs for your wedding don't have to have lyrics. There are plenty of beautiful tunes that are purely instrumental which would be a perfect fit for a mother-son dance at a wedding, especially if you envision sharing a ballroom dance like a waltz in honor of the moment.

97. "River Flows in You," by Yiruma

98. 'Labyrinth," by Shoshanna Michel

99. "Merry Go Round of Life - Howl's Moving Castle," by Joe Hisaichi

100. "Waltz 'Katzen Blut,'" by Yuji Nomi

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