60 Seconds With: Mo’Ju

‘Native Tongue’ was a big hit for you earlier this year, can you tell us about the inspiration behind the song?
In a very personal sense, this song is about longing for connection to culture and the desire to belong. It’s about the need find that belonging within my own culture, but also feeling like an outsider, even within parts of my immediate family as I could not communicate with them in their first languages. In a broader sense, to me, it’s about the loss of language as an ongoing impact of colonisation. The loss of Indigenous languages and the grief that follows.

Your music speaks to what it’s like for queer people, and people of colour in our world today, can you tell us what multiculturalism means to you?
To me, living in a place like Australia, Multiculturalism means more than just the presence of many cultures, it means the visibility and equal respect of many people from many cultures. It is about acceptance and harmony between many cultures, whilst we are still maintaining and celebrating our own individual cultures. The sharing of ideas and the opportunity to learn. I think it’s something that Australia likes to pride itself on, but I don’t truly believe we have reached this place yet.

You’ve included photos of your family in a lot of promo/ in your on stage performances. Can you tell us why you find honouring your family’s history so important?
The album for me was a homage to my elders and to my ancestors. This was about preserving their stories, maintaining oral traditions and also reflecting on how their stories inform who I am and how I am able to move through and interact with the world today

If you could invite any woman, (dead or living) to dinner, who would it be and why?
My Grandmother, Pidge, cause she’s one of my favourite people in the world. I wanna spend as much time with her as I can, cause she has taught me so much about who I want to be.  And maybe Billie Holiday… am I allowed to have two? Haha.

You describe yourself as 5’3 of attitude, which we love. What’s one attitude you wish everyone had?
Hmm. That is a very hard question. I value authenticity. It encompasses so many things. Our flaws and our attributes. Humility AND Pride. Patience and drive. Acceptance AND the desire to change the things we should not accept. All of our contradictions make us real. That is honesty. I think it’s a good way to be in the world.

Finally, is there anything you’d like to add about multiculturalism and feminism?
I could say some things, but I think it is probably more valuable for me to listen. I’m looking forward to hearing from all the incredible women at this event. It’s such an honour to be a part of this night!

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