The 'Days of Gold' have quite literally arrived for the pair as their track was unveiled as the theme song for the Commonwealth Games' mascot Borobi, a koala whose name is also the Indigenous Yugambeh word for the native animal.
Singer and guitarist Jeremy Marou, a Murray (Mer) Island man, says Tom Busby originally wrote the song to celebrate victory.
Marou says they thought the feel good song about never giving up and following your dreams would be a good soundtrack for a sport.
“We didn’t think it would be for something as big as the Commonwealth Games,” Marou says.
While it’s still surreal, he says they’re using it as an opportunity to reflect “the classic reconciliation model” to the world.
“When the song is playing to the background of great scenes of people winning gold medals, and people Shizam the song and see a white fella and black fella on the screen together, that there for us is purely what we want people to talk about,” Marou says.
He says he and Busby are good mates, creating good music together and hoping to stir some change and shift in attitudes in the end.
“We’ve got a new album very close to finishing and people would have no idea we’re talking about things like 'closing the gap'.
“Simple words like ‘close the gap’ – 90 per cent of people won’t think that would be about closing the gap for Indigenous Australians.”
He says he and Busby know what issues Indigenous people face on a daily basis, and visit regional communities in Queensland as much as they can.
“There’s so much negative hype around Indigenous people, and the Commonwealth Games is a time when we can really show off our culture.”
Borobi the blue Koala
The Games’ mascot, Borobi, is embracing Indigenous symbols.
Marou says Borobi, the Yugambeh language name for koala, and the designs on the male koala’s paws are a great way to pay respects to Indigenous people.
The focus on Indigenous roots is an aspect that makes Marou proud as an Indigenous person.
He says people who associate Australia with kangaroos and koalas will be able to make an instant link to its traditional owners.
“They’re going to see a koala and then the word Borobi, and straight away be thinking about the Indigenous people of Australia so it’ll be positive and we want people to talk about the positives, rather than the negatives,” he says.
Music is a Marou family affair
The 33-year-old who calls Rockhampton home says he’s been brought up with music, which is a big part of the Torres Strait Islander culture.
He says every one of his uncles play the guitar and at every family barbecue, wedding or funeral, they are always singing and dancing to cultural songs.
“In a sense it wasn’t something that was forced on us. It was just there,” Marou says.
Growing up in the church at Rockhampton was where he learnt his “trade” and played gospel songs in front of his first audience.
He then started a band in school where he met Tom Busby, the other member of Busby Marou.
“The rest is history,” he says.
But he admits, Busby Marou wasn’t always there from the beginning.
“We didn’t even have a name for the first couple of years.”