• Viral badge

Maya Rudolph Shared How She Created Her Own Path To Fame, Despite Having Two Famous Parents

"I knew I had to get there myself."

Maya Rudolph understands the privileges she's been given due to nepotism, but she doesn't believe it had any influence in breaking into comedy.

Maya Rudolph posing in a white shirt and black cardigan at The Groundlings event

For those who don't know, Maya's mother is legendary singer Minnie Riperton, who was best known for her 1974 song "Lovin' You."

closeup of Minnie Riperton

Her father is famed songwriter and producer Richard Rudolph. Richard cowrote "Lovin' You" with Minnie and collaborated with some of music's biggest names like Stevie Wonder, 2Pac, Teena Marie, Michael McDonald, Chaka Khan, The Temptations, New Edition, and more.

Maya Rudolph, her father Richard Rudolph, her mother Minnie Riperton, and Maya's brother Marc Rudolph

During a recent interview on the Armchair Expert podcast, Maya explained why she doesn't think having famous parents helped boost her acting and comedy career.

Closeup of Maya Rudolph

“They were musicians. They weren’t actors,” Maya said. “My trajectory was, I wanted to go to New York, and I wanted to be on Saturday Night Live. I understand that drive to be somewhere else — forage in a new city and create my own path."

"But that’s a huge undertaking. I wasn’t like, ‘Oh my dad writes songs, that’s gonna make me a comedian.’ There was no direct line. I knew I had to get there myself.”

Closeup of Maya Rudolph

Maya, who currently stars on the hit Apple TV+ series Loot, went on to reflect on her mother's legacy and how many of her friends weren't even aware that they were related.

Maya Rudolph in elegant white dress holding a champagne flute, smiling at an event

“It’s interesting because my mom was a singer that not all my friends were that aware of at the time. Everybody that knows who I am now knows that’s my mom, but growing up, I didn’t feel like she was a household name."

Minnie Riperton shaking a fan's hand while Richard Rudolph holds Maya, and Marc Rudolph is in the background

Despite feeling like those around her didn't truly know who her mother was, Maya couldn't help but gush over how "special" she was.

Maya Rudolph posing in a black blazer with gold detailing at an event

To learn more about Maya, be sure to check out her full Armchair Expert podcast interview here.