Maya Rudolph Has A Famous Parent And People Are Just Realising

Maya Ruldoph
Credit: Alamy

Saturday Night Live star Maya Rudolph is known for her acting and sketch comedy shows but many fans are unaware of the fact she actually has a famous parent. 

Rudolph, 51, is an American actress and comedian who has appeared in hit movies such as Bridesmaids, Grown Ups and Disenchanted.

She’s also starred in popular TV shows such as The Good Place and Big Mouth.

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But what many fans don’t know about Rudolph is that she’s the daughter of the beloved singer Minnie Riperton.

Riperton was best known for the 1975 track ‘Lovin’ You’, as well as her remarkable five-octave coloratura soprano range – which earned her the title of ‘Queen of the whistle register’.

The singer-songwriter, who grew up in Chicago, started out by singing the lead vocals for a local girl band named The Gems.

She would go on to do backing vocals for stars such as Elton John, Chuck Berry and Muddy Waters.

Minnie Riperton
People are only just realising singer-songwriter Minnie Riperton is Maya Rudolph’s mum. Credit: NBC

Riperton was married to songwriter and music producer Richard Rudolph from August 1970 until her death in 1979.

The pair shared two children: music engineer Marc Rudolph and Maya.

Many people have taken to social media and admitted that they had no idea the pair were mother and daughter.

“The fact Maya Rudolph is Minnie Riperton’s daughter will never not amaze me,” one person tweeted. 

Another added: “Just found out Maya Rudolph is Minnie Riperton’s daughter and actually she really looks like her.”

I’m just finding out that Maya Rudolph is Minnie Riperton’s daughter…,” a third wrote. 

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Heartwarmingly, Riperton’s most popular song ‘Lovin’ You’ was actually written for Rudolph and her brother when they were infants.

According to the liner notes from Riperton’s compilation album ‘Petals’ (via Smooth Radio), the melody was created as a distraction for the comedian so that the singer and her husband could hang out.

On the day ‘Lovin’ You’ was recorded, Rudolph was in the studio with Riperton and the singer can be heard singing her daughter’s name towards the end of the song – this can only be heard in the unedited and album versions.

The song reportedly fades out in the radio edit, as DJs at the time were apparently concerned the repeated ‘Maya’ line would be mistaken for a religious chant.

Sadly, Riperton died of breast cancer on July 12, 1979, aged just 31.

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Written by Ryan Wilks

Ryan is a content editor at IGV who specialises in celebrity and entertainment news. He has a degree in Magazine Journalism and Production from the University of Gloucestershire. He previously worked as a social media editor for Reach PLC’s national brands including Daily Star, Daily Express, OK! and The Mirror.