Cody Coyote
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Cody Coyote

Ottawa, Ontario, Canada | Established. Jan 01, 2013 | INDIE

Ottawa, Ontario, Canada | INDIE
Established on Jan, 2013
Solo Hip Hop Pop




"He's a rapper with a powerful message..."

Radio Interview - CBC News

"Ottawa: 10 emerging acts to watch"

A blend of hip-hop and rap, Ojibwe artist Cody Purcell’s music draws on the challenges he has faced in his own life and "issues found within First Nations communities." And his latest single, “Can You Hear Me Now?” encapsulates all these themes. The Searchlight regional top-10 contestant, who goes by Cody Coyote, likes to experiment with his sound, blending modern with traditional. Personal lyrics layered with catchy beats and a rich soundscape — Cody Coyote is definitely one to keep an eye on. — TM - CBC Music

"Going Out Best Bets, Jan. 5 to 11"

Ottawa hiphop artist Cody Coyote celebrates the release of his new music video, Northern Lights, with an all-ages party at Club SAW, 67 Nicholas St., on Saturday. Filmed in the Yukon, the video illustrates a song that aims to inspire indigenous youths to follow their dreams, something Cody Purcell has been doing since high school. The party runs from 6 to 9 p.m., with food and entertainment. Admission is $5. A portion of proceeds will be donated to the Shawenjeagamik Aboriginal Drop In Centre operated by the Odawa Native Friendship Centre. - Ottawa Citizen

"Cody Coyote debuts new video of Northern Lights and gratitude"

(Radio Interview) - CBC News

"Aboriginal hip-hop artist Cody Coyote visits Yukon for music video shoot"

Aboriginal hip-hop artist Cody Coyote chose the Yukon as the setting for a new music video featuring a yet to be released single titled Northern Lights.

Coyote promotes healthy lifestyles and healthy attitudes when he speaks with young people. The song is related to that message, he said.

"Showing in particular First Nations youth that we can chase our dreams, we can be successful, we can accomplish so many things, and with the title being Northern Lights, it's telling them, 'hey, you guys can shine like the Northern Lights.'"

"You know, dance like our ancestors did, display your culture, be who you want to be, and don't let other people tell you you can't be that," Coyote said.

"People will have haters; I have so many of them. But if you pay attention to them it's just going to bring you down."
He said he's not surprised that hip-hop has become popular with aboriginal artists and fans. They want to talk about what they see happening in their communities and the fundamentals of hip-hop are similar to many First Nation traditions, he said.

"Back in the day, First Nations people, the storytellers were the ones who passed down the teachings to the next generations, and if you look into the aspects of hip-hop you got the b-boys right. In First Nations culture we got our Fancy Dancers, we have our Grass Dancers and we have the dance styles that also tell a story," said Coyote.

Cody Coyote says the fundamentals of Hip Hop are similar to First Nation traditional culture. (Nick Ghattas/Retro Season Photography)
He grew up in Ottawa where he said he went through a rough period. Coyote said he uses those experiences to hopefully inspire young people who are having similar troubles. He talks about the devastation caused by drugs, alcoholism and high suicide rates. But he also talks about stereotypes that are put on First Nations people.
He went to the Kluane region north of Whitehorse earlier this week to shoot scenes for the video. He expects it will be released in about two months. He is not performing on this trip north, but said his music career is taking him across the country.

"Seeing the western and northern culture is just opening my eyes, you know, like learning all about new tribes, and how they grew up and how their ancestors were, it's just, I'm always trying to register new knowledge up in this mind of mine, just constant learning." - CBC News

"The Canadian dream: Aboriginal hip-hop artist talks about starting on the outside, looking in"

If Cody Purcell needed some obvious symbolism about his ability to overcome any obstacle in his life, he got it earlier this year.

The 24-year-old Ottawa hip-hop artist was touring in the Yukon when he got a chance to go mountain climbing.
Summiting that mountain, he says, drove home the message that: “Hey, this life is limitless in achieving what I wanted to achieve.”

Purcell, who performs under the name Cody Coyote, knows many of his fellow young indigenous Canadians see the world very differently and have fewer reasons for optimism.
Growing up, Purcell says the “Canadian dream” didn’t seem to include him.

Purcell’s life growing up wasn’t easy or stable. He talks of being beat up by skinheads once in Orleans. He battled drugs and alcohol in his early teens. He says his involvement in gang life was a way to gain a sense of identity and belonging that he didn’t have anywhere else.

When he was 20, he tried to kill himself after a night of drinking. 
“I remember (my brother) dropping me off at home and then I woke up the next morning and I had a big rash on my neck,” he says. “This was my turning point.”

The attempt, says Purcell, pushed him on a path to get sober, connect with his cultural identity and pursue his dreams.
Purcell has been making music since he was a teenager. Meanwhile, he’s worked dead-end jobs, in warehouses and construction, to help him and his family make ends meet. He sold his car to help pay the bills.

Today, he’s considered a breakout star in Canada’s hip hop scene. At the same time, he’s living in a four-bedroom apartment with his parents and two younger brothers in Ottawa’s southeast end. 
“I’m working for that studio time day in and day out just to help my dream,” he says. “I know I’m going someone where good.”

The unemployment rate for indigenous peoples in Canada aged 25-64 is 13 per cent — nearly twice that of non-indigenous Canadians, according to Statistics Canada’s 2011 national household survey. While this gap has narrowed slightly since 2006, the disparity remains stark.

The hurdles faced by indigenous people in Canada include barriers to education. Only 39 per cent of indigenous adults ages 20-24 have completed high school, compared with 87 per cent of non-indigenous people in Canada, according to the Chiefs Assembly on Education. And, only 48.4 per cent of indigenous peoples in Canada, between the ages of 25 and 64, have completed some kind of post-secondary diploma, certificate or degree — 16.3 percentage points lower than their non-indigenous counterparts, again according to the Statistics Canada 2011 national household survey.

An indigenous youth is more likely to end up in jail than to graduate high school, the Assembly of First Nations said in its 2011 fact sheet on First Nations quality of life.

“Generations of oppression is still affecting out community,” says Purcell. “Residential schools, inter-generational trauma, it’s frustrating to see.

“I think that it’s definitely more difficult to achieve that Canadian dream, just based on everything that’s happened historically (with indigenous peoples),” he says.

“With a lot of the alcoholism, the loss of cultural identity and just depression . . . people going toward drug use and gangs,” he says. “It’s killing our communities and it’s also killing any kind of dream that they might have.”

Purcell wants to defeat the odds.

He was recently accepted into a Family and Community Counselling program at the Native Education College in Vancouver. His family is making arrangements for him go out there in late-August, but he has a little trepidation because he’s still waiting for federal funding available to indigenous peoples in Canada.

“Now we’re at a point where things are OK,” he says. “But there are days when the cupboards will be pretty empty, right, and you wake up and you open up the fridge and there’s not too much there and it just hits you, like, shoot.”

In 10 years, Purcell plans to have made an impact with his music and to be at a point financially where his family can have a house again and his parents can retire.

“They’ve taken care of me my whole life, right,” he says. “And I just want to give back.” - Ottawa Citizen

"20 Questions With: Cody Coyote"

A lot can happen in four years – just ask Ottawa hip-hop artist Cody Purcell.

Growing up in the city’s East End, Purcell discovered drugs at a young age and fell in with a rough crowd. Fueled by anger and a steady dose of alcohol, his adolescence revolved around violence, crime and depression. Then, at the age of 20, he tried to kill himself.

“With violence around me as often as it was, I found myself wanting to be stronger, which led me down a very dark road of experimenting with steroids,” he says. “The negative effects that this had on my body and my mind, along with the violence, the partying and the lifestyle I was living, led me to severe depression. I experienced loneliness, anger, nightmares and much more, which resulted in my suicide attempt.”

Cody Coyote
Now 24, and four years sober, he’s using his voice to inspire others and provide hope for the future.

In addition to his public speaking and social activism, Purcell has established himself as a mainstay in the Canadian hip-hop community. Performing under the name Cody Coyote, he’s racked up tens of thousands of Youtube views and earned a pair of nominations at the 2015 Indigenous Music Awards. Most recently, he was named a Top 10 finalist in a national talent search hosted by imagineNATIVE and Slaight Music.

Here’s an interview with the man himself.

How did you get in to music?
After being introduced to a studio that was built in my old high school, I began experimenting with instrumentals created by friends of mine. This  led to me writing lyrics and recording music, which became an outlet for me.

Why hip hop?
Hip hop was always something that appealed to me, mainly because of the storytelling that was found within conscious hip hop. I was always drawn to the storytelling aspects of music in general, but there was something about the way it was done in hip hop; I could feel the realism of it just from the delivery of the MC. Within First Nations culture and history, we had storytellers who provided future generations with teachings and wisdom. That said, I see hip-hop MCs as modern-day storytellers who are speaking about their experiences through conscious messages and music.

How would you describe your sound?
I would have to say my music has a hip hop/experimental sound. Lately I’ve been working to incorporate sounds that are both traditional and modern. I’m also looking to work with other genres and sounds that are appealing to me.

Who are some of your influences?
Hands down, one of my biggest influences musically would have to be Gary ‘Litefoot’ Davis. He was the one who made me realize that hip hop was universal and that there was a place for First Nations people within it.

Favourite song of all time?
My Land by Litefoot. With some of the frustrations growing up outside of my culture with limited knowledge, or a cultural identity, it helped me vent.

What inspires your songwriting?
Life experiences, positive messages and storytelling.

What are some of the day jobs you’ve had outside of music? 
I’ve done everything from construction to working as an order picker. Currently I’m working as a part-time order picker with hopes to do music full time.

What role do your indigenous roots play in your day-to-day life in general and your music in particular?
Now that I know where my blood line comes from, what tribe/band I’m from and I’m able to learn more about my culture, I feel that it plays a very important role in who I am as a person and as an artist. Without my culture I wouldn’t be where I am today. It saved my life and I am both fortunate and grateful for that.

How so?
Growing up, I hung around with a rough crowd, which resulted in me drinking, using substances and committing crimes. Later down the road, this lifestyle led to some depressing times and I felt very alone. With that being said, I did something that I’m not proud of, and that I’m grateful I did not succeed in … a suicide attempt.
That night I was under the influence of alcohol, and I’d been using steroids at that point in my life. Most of that night is still a blur, but I do remember waking up the next day to the police at my house. They told me I was being charged and they took me to the hospital. After leaving the hospital and being checked out, I was told that I had to go to the Ottawa court house later on in the week. It was there that I was offered an opportunity to take part in a diversion program offered at the Odawa Native Friendship Centre that was specifically for indigenous youth.

During my time at this program I experienced my first healing circle, I was invited to participate in my first sweat at the sweat lodge and I was connected with my culture – something that I grew up outside of. This program and the people I met through it helped me in so many ways. I attended two sweats after that, and I’ve been learning more and more about my culture and indigenous roots. I’m proud to say that I’m now four years sober from drugs and alcohol.

How did you get into public speaking, and what messages do you try to get across?
I first got into public speaking at my old high school, where I spoke to a large group of youth about sobriety and chasing their dreams. I often speak about these two topics and share my story with hopes that my audience feels inspired afterwards. I share that this life is limitless and that people should never give up on their dreams, what they wish to accomplish and, most importantly, themselves.

Do you consider yourself an activist? How does your platform as a musician play into that?
I see myself as someone who stands up for what he believes in and for what is right. This falls hand in hand with activism in some cases, and I feel that my music/artistry plays a big role in this. I feel that as an artist I’m able to showcase that we all have the power to make change happen, and that by utilizing our voices we can do wonders.

What do you do when you’re not making music?
When I’m not making music I can often be found doing outdoor activities, relaxing at home, spending time with family and friends, and experiencing new foods/restaurants.

If you could collaborate with one group or artist, living or dead, who would it be?
It would have to be either Litefoot or Common.

As a musician, how do you define success?
When you’re able to make a positive impact and accomplish what your heart desires.

Tell us a bit about your Indigenous Music Award nominations.
Tell us a bit about your Indigenous Music Award nominations.
After a lot of hard work and dedication I found myself as a nominee for two different categories (Single of the Year and Best Rap/Hip Hop CD) at the 2015 Indigenous Music Awards. Unfortunately I didn’t bring home an award, but knowing that I made it that far has motivated me even more to go back and receive one. For me it was a huge accomplishment and I feel so blessed to have been a nominee.

What’s the highlight of your career so far?
Traveling to various communities and cities along with the many great people I’ve met on my journey.

What has been your biggest challenge or struggle, either musically or personally?
My biggest challenge to date would have to be breaking into mainstream radio.

Describe yourself in three words.
Strong. Caring. Real.

There’s a ton of musicians out there. What makes Cody Coyote different?
I walk my talk and I will always remain a positive role model for those who listen to my music.

What are you currently working on, and what’s coming up for you in the next year?
During my amazing trip to the Canadian Yukon, I met up with two friends of mine (Nick Johnson and Yudii Mercredi) who are in an indigenous hip-hop duo based out of Whitehorse, called Vision Quest, to shoot a music video for our new single ‘Northern Lights.’ This song was created to inspire First Nations, Inuit and Metis youth to follow their dreams and to overcome any kind of doubt they may have from others. - Digital Drum - APTN

"Carleton University interview with Cody Coyote"

Cody Coyote had a chance to be interviewed by Kelsey Curtis from Carleton Unversity on November 26th, 2015. For those of you who missed the interview here's a video showing how it went!

Video credits: Raphaela Nehme, Gabriele Roy and Kelsey Curtis

Location: Carleton University
1125 Colonel By Dr, Ottawa, ON, CA K1S 5B6

Date: November 26, 2015 - Raphaela Nehme, Gabriele Roy and Kelsey Curtis

"F*** Me I'm Famous videos receive backlash from indigenous community"

A nightclub in Spain is getting a lot of buzz from Canada on its Facebook page.

Videos that were released on July 1 to promote the F*** Me I'm Famous DJ shows featuring David Guetta at the Pacha nightclub in Ibiza, Spain, are being criticized for their racist and stereotypical images of indigenous women.

Headdresses banned at Osheaga music festival
Winnipeg Folk Festival urged to ban headdresses
The scantily clad women in the video are shown wearing headdresses, face paint and other indigenous-inspired designs while doing "war whoops."

Ojibwe hip-hop artist Cody Coyote has started his own Facebook page called End F*** Me I'm Famous.

Cody Coyote
Cody Coyote is a hip-hop artist who started a Facebook group calling for an end to the F*** Me I'm Famous videos. (Nick Ghattas/Retro Season Photography)

"I started the group because after seeing the images and videos posted on their page, I felt offended," Coyote said in an interview.

"For this kind of stuff to exist, it makes me absolutely sick to my stomach, and it frustrates me knowing that some people think it's OK to do this kind of thing."

The Facebook page for F*** Me I'm Famous has generated swift backlash, with hundreds of comments against the videos.

Shenandoah Ellis-Umer, a Dakota woman, wrote, "You lost a fan David Guetta. I may be just one person but that's all it takes. And the last time I checked, I'm no ones mascot."

Shandra Spears Bombay, an Anishinaabe writer, wrote, "Hyper-sexualized (and in drag, I might add, because most of what those racist women are wearing are typically male garments), racist crap like this is exactly the kind of imagery that contribute to us being violated and killed."

Bombay is referring to the more than 1,200 missing and murdered indigenous women in Canada.

"The war bonnet is not the only way to represent leadership because we come from diverse nations, and although some indigenous women have worn the war bonnet or breastplate, it's not typically female attire," Bombay said in a followup interview.

"These people are dehumanizing and endangering both indigenous women and men with a single gesture," she added.

In recent years, there have been several calls by the public for people to stop wearing and selling faux headdresses. Headdresses are considered a sacred item by First Nations and only those who have earned the right to wear them are allowed.

Osheaga, a popular music festival in Montreal, just issued a ban on the wearing of headdresses.

"Osheaga asks fans and artists attending the festival to not use this symbol as a fashion accessory," the festival stated on its Facebook page.

Interview requests to David Guetta and Pacha nightclub went unanswered. - Kim Wheeler, CBC News

"Daytime Ottawa interview with Cody Coyote"

Daytime Ottawa interview with Cody Coyote

Cody Coyote had a chance to be interviewed by Derick Fage and Tammie Trellert from Daytime Ottawa on April 29th, 2015. For those of you who missed the interview here's a video showing how it went!

Video credits: Daytime Ottawa

Location: Rogers TV
475 Richmond Rd. Ottawa, ON, CA K2A 0G3

Date: April 29, 2015 - Rogers TV

"Kitigan Zibi"

Cody Coyote went to Kitigan Zibi on April 10th ,2015. When he was there he had a chance to meet with Geezer and Corey Chorus from CKWE 103.9 FM for an interview. They discussed various topics that were related to music and Cody Coyote. For those of you who missed the interview here's a video showing how it went!

Video credits: Natasha Commanda

Location: CKWE 103.9 Radio
3 Kikinamage Mikan Maniwaki, QC, CA J9E 3C9

Date: April 10, 2015 - CKWE 103.9 Radio

"Spotlight: Cody Coyote"

Five years ago, Cody Purcell hit rock bottom and attempted suicide. Today, he’s using hip hop to inspire others and provide hope for the future.

Performing as Cody Coyote, the Ottawa MC has made a name for himself by sharing his personal experiences, tackling issues facing the Indigenous community and promoting positive change. And at 25, he’s just getting started.

We recently visited Cody in the studio, where he talked about the power of storytelling, working on his new album and his hope for a better Canada.

To learn more about Cody, check out our 20 Questions blog post and stay tuned for this Friday’s podcast to hear the exclusive premiere of Someday. - Digital Drum

"Cody Coyote: Someday"

The DD Podcast is back with another First Listen Friday, and this week you’re in for some serious fire.

We were first introduced to Cody Purcell (aka Cody Coyote) a few years ago, and connected with him for a 20 Questions interview in 2016. As we quickly learned, there’s a lot more to Cody than his music.

Growing up in Ottawa’s East End, he discovered drugs at a young age and fell in with a rough crowd. Fueled by anger and a steady dose of alcohol, his adolescence revolved around violence, crime and depression. Then, at the age of 20, he tried to kill himself.

On Episode 7 of the DD Podcast, Cody talks about getting sober, discovering his culture, reflecting reality through art and using his music to inspire others. He also premieres Someday, the first single from his forthcoming album, Mamawi. - Digital Drum


Lose Control EP

Release date: 03/22/2015

1. Lose Control

2. Warrior

3. We Will See (Feat. Shannon Hamilton)

4. Native Boy (Feat. Mates)

5. I Like That (Feat. J.O.C. & Mitch Stone)



Cody Purcell also known by his stage name “Cody Coyote” was born on April 17th, 1992, was raised in Ottawa, Ontario, Canada and is of Ojibwe/Irish decent with ancestry from Matachewan First Nation located in Northern Ontario, Canada. He is a Hip-Hop/Experimental recording artist, a songwriter, public speaker and a workshop facilitator.

Cody Coyote began writing poetry at the age of 13 as an outlet which later lead to him starting his journey with music at the age of 16 in a recording studio at his old high school, St. Matthew High School in Orleans, Ontario, Canada. Music also became an outlet for him and has remained to be ever since.   

“A lot can happen in four years - just ask Ottawa hip-hop artist Cody Purcell”
– Digital Drum/APTN

Currently Cody Coyote is working on his upcoming album entitled “Mamawi” which is scheduled to be released in the Fall of 2017. The album’s title “Mamawi” is Ojibwe and in translation to English means “All Together”. This project has been created to focus on reconciliation between Canada and Indigenous people, togetherness, love and unity.

His first CD release was for his debut EP “Lose Control” which took him to the 2015 Indigenous Music Awards held in Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada where he was up for nomination in the “Best Rap/Hip Hop CD” and the “Single of the year” categories. Since then Cody Coyote has performed in various communities and cities across Canada. He has  performed on major platforms such as the JUNO Showcase held at the 2017 Ottawa Music Summit and has opened for the likes of “A Tribe Called Red” at the 2017 Indspire Soaring Indigenous Youth Career Conference. Cody Coyote was also a part of CBC’s “Searchlight” contest in 2015 and in 2017. He has also had numerous newspaper interviews, radio interviews and media appearances in regards to his music. These interviews and appearances are from sources such as CBC, CTV, The Ottawa Citizen Newspaper and APTN’s (Aboriginal People’s Television Network) “Digital Drum”.

Cody Coyote’s future plans are to pursue a secondary career as an actor and to continue to tour Canada to share his music further with his listeners/audience,.

With the upcoming release of “Mamawi” he hopes to inspire true reconciliation with understanding and love for the Indigenous people of Canada by educating his audience about various topics in relation to Indigenous issues, culture and people.

“He’s a rapper with a powerful message…” – CBC’s “All In A Day”

“A blend of hip-hop and rap, Ojibwe artist Cody Purcell’s music draws on the challenges he has faced in his own life and "issues found within First Nations communities." And his latest single, “Can You Hear Me Now?” encapsulates all these themes. The Searchlight regional top-10 contestant, who goes by Cody Coyote, likes to experiment with his sound, blending modern with traditional. Personal lyrics layered with catchy beats and a rich soundscape — Cody Coyote is definitely one to keep an eye on. — TM” – CBC Music

Band Members