The Game Releases The Realest Song About Mothers Since “Dear Mama” (Audio)
One day after Prince died, The Game released “Rest In Purple,” a powerful tribute song that spoke to how Prince’s music affected Game personally, and how his death caused Game to reflect on his own mortality. Now, days after the death of Afeni Shakur, mother of Tupac and a revolutionary in her own right, the MC born Jayceon Taylor uses his prodigious pen to celebrate Afeni, his mother and moms around the world.
“Mama” is far from a Hallmark card. Rather than spew flowery platitudes, Game has written perhaps the realest song about mothers since Pac’s “Dear Mama.” He opens the song saying “Tupac wouldn’t been shit without his mama. Obama wouldn’t be shit without his mama and his baby mama.” From there he launches into a deeply personal narrative about his relationship with his own mother, saying “See my mama set me down when I was 12. She told me I was heaven while I always gave her hell. No role models, daddy in and out of jail. Caught up in the system where they trap us black males.” He concludes both his first and second verses with a nod to Tupac’s own celebration of Afeni, slightly altering one of “Dear Mama’s” most memorable lines to “And even still, you gon’ always be my black queen, Mama. Cause you ain’t never been no crack fiend, Mama. And even though your only son grew up to be a thug, you ain’t never stopped showin’ me love.”
In the song’s refrain, Game expands his sentiments to us all, stating bluntly and matter-of-factly that “we ain’t shit without our mamas.” After an equally impactful second verse, he closes by dedicating “Mama” to his mother, Lynette Marie Baker, and extending his condolences about the death of Afeni Shakur, but drawing comfort in the fact that she and her son have been reunited. As we approach mother’s day, this is a potent celebration of the women who gave us life.