Acclaimed Wolastoq vocal artist and composer Jeremy Dutcher releases his debut single, “Honor Song”, on RPM Records.
Following in the footsteps of breakout Indigenous artists like Tanya Tagaq and A Tribe Called Red, Jeremy Dutcher combines melodies and songs from his Indigenous nation with contemporary classical and electronic sounds to create a sound that is entirely new, powerful, and compelling.
Jeremy Dutcher’s incredible voice and artistic vision place him definitively at the forefront of the Indigenous Next Wave. “Honor Song” boldly declares the arrival of a singularly powerful new voice in Indigenous music.
Produced with Montreal-based artist, BUFFLO (Jean-Michel Blais), and mixed and mastered by Dan Weston (A Tribe Called Red, Classified, Daniel Romano), “Honor Song” features a soaring arrangement of vocals, strings, piano, hand drum, and electronics. The single is deeply personal to Dutcher, who sees it as part of a long continuum of Indigenous resistance to extractive industry.
“Honor Song” re-envisions and reimagines a well-known honour song from the Mi’kmaq nation, that Jeremy sings in the Wolastoqey language. “I came to learn the origins of this chant as I came to know its creator, George Paul”, Jeremy says. “He received it in ceremony and gifted it to the Wabanakiyik (East Coast peoples). “I’m so grateful George has allowed me to put my own voice and stamp on this amazing melody.”
Like the massive pipeline resistance camps established at Standing Rock, North Dakota, Jeremy Dutcher’s home territory in New Brunswick has faced similar threats to their land and water from the fracking industry. In 2013, Mi’kmaq and Maliseet water protectors faced off against a Texas-based company attempting to begin fracking at Elsipogtog First Nation. The resistance effort was met with a huge police presence, and the struggle between Indigenous water protectors and the RCMP, police dogs, and snipers made international headlines. George Paul’s “Honor Song” could be heard being sung at the frontlines.
“This song is a rallying cry”, Dutcher says, “and I hope my interpretation of this iconic melody can be an anthem for another generation of cultural warriors and land protectors.”
Acclaimed Mi’kmaq artist Jordan Bennett created the artwork for the single using traditional designs inspired by Mi’kmaq and Maliseet quillwork, hieroglyphs, and carving. “The language Jeremy is sharing is of our earth, rooted in the land”, Bennett says. “The main design is known as the ‘double rainbow’, one of the oldest known and still remembered quillwork designs from our respective nations.”
STREAM/BUY: Jeremy Dutcher,”Honor Song” here
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Jeremy Dutcher, “Honor Song”
Release Date: 09.27.2017
Available worldwide: smarturl.it/honorsong