On Monday, Oct. 12 — also known as Indigenous Peoples’ Day — Portugal The Man, Weird Al and Portland-based hip-hop artist The Last Artful Dodgr teamed up for a powerful and rallying new song, “Who’s Gonna Stop Me.”
The track arrives as the first one-off from Portugal The Man since their 2017 album Woodstock — as well as the first non-comedic release and feature from Weird Al.
“I first met Portugal. The Man when we were both part of the somewhat-problematic, under-rehearsed ‘Bonnaroo Lineup Announcement Megathon’ back in 2013,” recalls Weird Al. “Since then they have become not only my friends, but one of my favorite bands in the world. I’ve jammed with them on stage, and also produced polka remixes for two of their songs. I couldn’t love their new single more, and it’s a true honor (honour if you’re British) for me to be featured on it.”
“Whose Gonna Stop Me” was co-written with Jeff Bhasker (Kanye West) and Paul Williams.
The song’s music video, directed by Aaron Brown, stars the band and Weird Al along with indigenous artists from around the country — plus some animations added with intent.
As the band says, in the tradition of the indigenous cultures of the western North American territories, the coyote represents the trickster and maker of new worlds. “[It’s] an archetype that can be found in nearly all indigenous and ancient cultures … through their playfulness, they connect people.”
Both the new song and visual — which was filmed in the band’s backyard and at the river they live near — are the latest in Portugal The Man’s ongoing mission of advocating for indigenous peoples and native rights, following the launch of the PTM Foundation earlier this year.
“The world is going through changes which hurt and are scary. Working with indigenous figures, I have been reassured that they are both stewards of the land as well as healers of conflict both within and out,” Brown exclusively tells Billboard. “Working with PTM has given me hope in a time that has been a serious trial for myself, the people I respect, look up to, and value. I have learned a lot being involved in this production and I look forward to seeing other’s reception of the wisdom of the indigenous.”
Watch the video for “Who’s Gonna Stop Me” below.