Mother Flag and Country, the Hostel Band

Mother Flag and Country was the Akaitcho Hall (residential school) hostel band from 1970 to '72.

Each year, a group of students would be allowed to use the Akaitcho Hall equipment in exchange for doing all the dances for the students at the hall.

I was lucky to be the Singer in a Rock'n'Roll band for those two years.  I was a small fish in a small pond.  My time in both Yellowknife and Fort Simpson gave me opportunities I would never have had in a bigger pond, and I still like to play (see The School of Rock)!

Ut Omnes Unum Sint

Was the moto of Akaitcho Hall, Yellowknife, NWT.  It means "That they may all be one."  With Inuit, Filipino, French Canadian, English and Scottish band members, we all became Mother Flag and Country.

We did not just play at Akaitcho, Sir John or St. Patrick School.  We played The Elks Hall, Con. Mines, Giant Mines, The Hoist Room, The Gold Range (Strange Range) and The Yellowknife Inn.  Though, we missed The Explorer (Exploiter) by a couple of years, we did fly to Fort Smith to do their Grad.  Ours worst gig was in Fort Providence (the 300 km cold, bumpy drive was hard on my 6L6s, and I remember who shut off the furnace, Lakandula).

I often suggest eating together for team building (the band did that), but the best team building is playing music together.

About Us

Dan Pronovost and Chris Morgan were in the 1971 band.  I remember Chris impressed me with his Teac reel-to-reel tape-deck and Sennheiser headphones. 

I got the nickname "Scotty" that year.  The other two members were Gerard Menard, our bass player (his brother had a pickup, I'm not sure which was more important).  Finally, Alan Hyatt was our drummer, but would rather have been the singer.  I jammed with Alan for hours, playing guitar (maybe I wanted to play lead).

In 1972, Joe Otokiak joined us to replace Chris on lead guitar.  I did not know until recently that his cousin is Mabel Oyakyoak.  Mabel writes to me every Christmas with northern adventures that make me feel truly Canadian.

Lakandula Baban (keyboards) and I were room mates, and we branched off our rock band work to do a lounge gig at the Elks club. 


Even in small ponds there is competition.  When Pat Burk left the band and hostel, and Rene Deshurley did not like singing in-front of crowds, I got to sing "La-la-la-la Lola."


As a cover band, I would not say that our music made Mother Flag and Country special, but the fact that band members, with such varied backgrounds, made music for 2 years is definitely notable!

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