'I am not Diana Ross junior,' Diana Ross' eldest daughter on being compared to her famous mom
Rhonda Ross Kendrick, daughter to legendary singer Diana Ross, has followed the iconic singer steps into the music industry. But make no mistake, Rhonda is her own woman, and she wants to be recognized by her talents, not her mom's legacy.
Being the daughter of legendary singer Diana Ross and Motown Records founder Berry Gordy, Rhonda Ross had the passion for music on her veins, so no one was surprised when she grew up to be a singer-songwriter. Although not as famous as her mom or some of her siblings like Tracee Ellis Ross, Rhonda has been in the industry for quite some time.
The singer opened for her famous mother's nearly sold-out concert at the Kravis Center last year. It was the first time in 25 years that Diana asked her daughter to perform with her.
"It meant a lot to me," the younger Ross said during an interview. "It meant she was watching me, and that she liked what I was creating and building and the songs I was writing."
On being compared to her mother, this is what Rhonda had to say:
"Diana is an incredible woman and a glorious mother. I never play any of her material in my sets as this is my way of setting boundaries. I'm happy for people to be curious about me because of our relationship, but I am not Diana Ross junior. I am Rhonda Ross Kendrick."
Diana was pregnant with Rhonda when she married music business manager Robert Silberstein in 1971. Her daughter didn't find out she was the daughter of Berry Gordy, who remained as a close friend of the family until she was 13.
While shocking at first, Rhonda embraced her father without trouble, and to this day she's close with both Gordy and Silberstein.
Diana was a hands-on mother to her five children despite her busy career. "Somehow she was able to stay a very present mother," Rhonda said. Diana always made sure to arrange her schedule leaving time to be at home with her kids as much as possible.
And whenever she took the stage, they were often backstage. Which explains the love that Rhonda and Evan developed for the music industry.
The 47-year-old married to jazz pianist Rodney Kendrick in 2006, and they have a 9-year-old son, Raif-Henok Emmanuel Kendrick.