Tuesday, April 10, 2012


I first met the "Bruthers" a few years back while 
traveling across Ontario to see Buffy Sainte-Marie
Somewhere between August and September of 2009, 
Buffy's live backing band had completely changed 
and various members of BoDM were hired.

This was an incredibly positive move, 
reinvigorating Buffy's live performances 
with a youthful, all Native band of musicians, 
bringing about significant changes in her set-list 
and interpretation of the material.

There was a distinct connection between 
the musicians on stage 
and her live sets became that much more magical! 
I had to introduce myself to these 
wonderful musicians 
and thank them for their work! 
I later found out that these men were part of 
their own musical project, 
whose inception goes back almost a decade! 

I can honestly say that what the members of BoDM
brought to the stage while backing
Buffy Sainte-Marie, 
was enough to make me find out who these guys are 
and seek out their own material! 
Since then, I've kept in contact with the Bruthers
In September 2011, they independently released 
their debut album SPEAKERS OF TOMORROW
which received a Juno nomination earlier this year 
in February for Aboriginal Album of the Year 
and won Best Rock CD at the 
Aboriginal People's Choice Music Awards 
in November 2011. 
BoDM are currently on the road promoting 
while working on material for their follow-up album. 
I caught up with lead vocalist, 
guitarist and songwriter 
Donovan Mojopin 
earlier this week, before their 
Thursday night at the Pyramid Cabaret 
in Winnipeg, MB.

RT - Could you tell me exactly how 
came about ?

DM - I moved to Vancouver in 94', a few years after Donny Ducharme 
moved there as well. We hooked up through music before 
and we thought that together we should start a band. 
At the time we didn't know what we were creating (BoDM). 
We both wrote music and had pieces of songs. 
I would show him songs and we would just "hammer" the good stuff out. 
He would do the same. It seemed so natural. 
It was a few years into it we decided to record these songs. 
It was quite the challenge! We were without a drummer; 
Donny asked me to just play drums and get the music documented, so I did. 
We recorded most of the album as two-piece and had so much fun doing it. 
We needed to find a drummer and we needed to find a name for this project. 
"Brotherz FROM Different Motherz" BFDM. 
That name was taken, so we changed "from" to "of". Yaay! (laughs)
At around this time my real blood brother (Michel Bruyere) stepped in for drums. 
We had a show in Winnipeg for NAIG (North American Indigenous Games), 
we rehearsed a few times and that's when he introduced 
one of the best songs on "Speakers" album - the title song!
So we rehearsed it a few times... let me tell you, 
the chills going through my body singing this song even to this day is amazing! 
I was sold on making this work! 
After that show, we were invited back to Winnipeg for an aboriginal day. 
So we booked time with our great friend Norbert Ducharme 
who had a studio in the north end of the city of Winnipeg. 
We did bed tracks to "Speakers Of Tomorrow", "How Long" 
and re-recorded "Bows And Arrows" on which 
I originally played the drums in previous recordings. 
Then life happened and we put the whole recording on the shelf. 
I can't say when, maybe like 04' we retired BoDM... 
but my brother never stopped. 
He kept pushing and breaking down doors with this album in hand. 
I must say I am very proud of him, all the hard work he has done 
and for not giving up on the BoDM
I have a lot of thanks to give to him and Donny!

RT - I'm also curious to know a bit about 
the BoDM's upbringing here in Canada. 
What and who were your musical influences 
growing up?

DM - Well I can tell you mine. 
My dad and his love for music was a HUGE influence on me, 
I consider myself lucky to be exposed to such an appreciation for the love of music.
From good southern rock, country music, just everything! 
I am so so lucky! A lot of our youth have not been so lucky 
to have such a great influence like this in their lifetime. 
I think that is sad but true. 
As an artist it is apparent that we not be ignorant in each others art. 
Good or bad. Bad or good. 
We have to put aside our egos and just learn how to appreciate the good. 
Of course there is some art that should just be pushed to the side 
but we as true artists know this when we see it. 
I think pop music is what it is and it's meant for a certain purpose. 
Kinda like chewing gum; once the flavor has run it's course we throw it out. 
My father played a big part in my life with music. 
He first introduced me to Led Zeppelin and oh my god! 
My life change from the moment I played that mixed tape he made for me. 
I wanted more! Then came Jimi Hendrix, the Who, 
the Beatles, Pink Floyd and then I just took it from there.
I would listen to any random album he had in his collection. 
It could be stuff from the Allman Brothers or Littlefeet 
to George Jones or Waylon Jennings. 
I was in music bliss and all this I would share with my little brother, Michel. 
He would be just as excepting to this. 
I would just watch him and smile an say to myself 
"yes! he likes it!" (smiles
So when I learned how to play my first instrument which is drums, 
John Bonham was my guy and I shared that with Michel. 
As I knew, he would be appreciative to whatever I had to share. 
He (Michel) later picked up the sticks and has never turned back since.

RT - The overall quality of the 
album is great! 
Could you describe who was involved? 

DM - We have a lot and I mean a LOT of thanks to give to guys like 
Jamie Sitar, Doug Fury and Norbert Ducharme. 
The process was a bit crazy! 
I kind of elaborated on how most of the album was recorded as a two piece, 
but in all it was just a bunch of friends who believed 
that this music should be documented and with great quality. 
It just happened to be that these guys are really good at what they do 
and we are just lucky to have our stars aligned. 
When I listen to the album, I still think of how it all came together 
and I just get the biggest smile.

RT - I wanted to ask about the lead single
and title track of the album, 
"Speakers Of Tomorrow".
Personally, I think it's a very powerful song,
posing an important question.
As a father and a musical leader, 
who do you feel will be the "Speakers of Tomorrow"?

DM - Great song! Awesome anthem for the youth 
and such an important message to our first nation youth as well. 
I'm honored to sing and perform this song my brother wrote. 
I believe in this important composition. 
Who do I believe should be our speakers?...very good question. 
I think our youth have it so tough but yet so easy, 
being aware of their responsibility as role-models 
is huge in our communities... HUGE! 
When I see certain acts that display the negative in our culture, 
I see that as a decline in our civilization. 
Everyone knows how the general population think 
of the "Indian" without even saying. 
The chorus of this song has so much meaning. I sing It with pride! 
As a father, yes, my daughter will be a speaker. 
I have belief that she will be an awesome role-model for her generation. 
As a band member I could only take that responsibility and never abuse it. 
It is so important to me to work at being 
such a positive human being for our youth. 
So much talent in our culture, our youth. 
I could only give thanks to the ones who spread a good message.

RT - With the recent Juno nomination 
and performance in Ottawa,
BoDM have certainly received 
some well deserved recognition; 
could you tell me what BoDM have planned next?

DM - Well with new members Jesse Green and Leroy Constant in the fuse,
we have new material that sends the same positive message.
Our sound is huge! We want to spread a message that says 
no matter where you are, no matter who you are, you can do this too! 
We want to collaborate with the youth, unite, stand and deliver! 
It is so important to us! 
We will never surrender to negativity in our culture when we have so much to give. 
With that, I challenge our youth to stand up and be proud of who you are! 
Stand up for someone when they need us! 
Never back down and speak up!
It is your right as a human being!