The True Canadians Podcast

For over two centuries, the Métis have fought for recognition as an Indigenous people and as a Nation. It’s a story worth telling, but until recently, it hasn’t been heard enough.

The True Canadians podcast is based the book of the same name, and refers to the fact that the Métis truly are people born of this land — well before Canada became a country of its own.

Host David Wylynko is a media consultant, writer, and former journalist. He grew up in the Winnipeg suburb of Fort Garry, not far from the actual Fort Garry, where the Métis first set up a provisional government in 1869, and he’s had a lifelong fascination with the Métis.  While he and his co-author, Patricia Russell, a Métis writer and former CBC journalist, were touring the country to promote the book, they discovered that readers wanted to know more about the people, places, events, and milestones featured in the pages of The True Canadians. A podcast seemed to be the best way to share what they learned. So they invited some of the personalities they wrote about, and some new voices, to tell more of their stories.

Each episode digs deeper into the important roles the Métis have played — and are continuing to play — in the evolution of Canada. Listeners will get to know the leaders, the artists, and the executives who are defining what it means to be Métis in the twenty-first century, and hear about the ongoing campaigns to win recognition, forge a stronger sense of community, and advance genuine reconciliation with other Canadians.

Original music for the podcast was composed and performed by Metis fiddler Alex Kusturok. Each episode begins with the words of the late Métis leader Jim Sinclair, delivered at the closing of the 1987 Meech Lake negotiations in Ottawa.

The podcast is available on most podcasting platforms, including:

Latest episode

Band of Métis Brothers
“If somebody that’s been trained four times how to use an AK-47 is a couple of hundred yards from you, and they are trying to shoot you, you get shot.” Not exactly what a young NATO peacekeeper wants to hear. But like countless Métis who have found themselves in the middle of wars over the centuries, retired Sgt. Chuck Isaacs has learned a few things as a member of the Canadian Forces. Métis fought in the American Revolutionary War and the US Civil War. They did their duty in the Balkans and Afghanistan, and in every major war in between. By all accounts, Métis and other Indigenous Canadians are over-represented in Canada’s roll call of veterans. There’s even a separate Remembrance Day for them: November 8. But their record of service is rarely acknowledged by the broader public. As president of the Aboriginal Veterans Society of Alberta and the Métis Veterans Council of Alberta, Isaacs would like to change that. In this episode of The True Canadians, he explains what it would take to make that happen, and shares some of his experiences as one of those NATO peacekeepers who helped rebuild what used to be Yugoslavia in the 1990s.

Mentioned in this episode

Previous episodes

Podcast Host and author David Wylynko

Podcast host David Wylynko and his co-author, Patricia Russell.