'It's reminding us that success is born from people being moved and souls stirring,' says lead singer

Mother Mother lead singer Ryan Guldemond, centre, is shown with his bandmates in this handout image. The Vancouver rock act recently saw a surge in the popularity of three of their songs, fuelled by TikTok. (James O'Mara/Watchdog Management/The Canadian Press)

Ryan Guldemond says he believes luck, good timing and “a little pixie dust” led to his band Mother Mother catching fire on TikTok in recent weeks.

The lead singer and guitarist for the Vancouver rock act says he was surprised when, seemingly out of nowhere, three tracks from their 2008 album O My Heart spiked in popularity on the music-fuelled social app.

The songs started to find noticeable traction on the platform in August, and have since become the soundtrack to thousands of videos.


The phenomenon is powered by the young-lovers-scorned track Hayloft, which led many creators to film themselves lip-syncing to the frenetic refrain: “My daddy’s got a gun, you better run.”

Clips tagged with “mothermother” have been viewed more than 65.5 million times on the platform as of Wednesday afternoon. That’s helped push the band up the rankings of Rolling Stone’s Artists 500, which monitors the most-streamed artists across the world. Mother Mother sits at No. 413 in their third week on the chart.

Mother Mother first began performing in 2005, three years before releasing O My Heart. The three songs to have found popularity on TikTok are all from that 2008 album. (CBC)

The Juno-nominated band’s Arms Tonite and Wrecking Ball are two other songs from their 2008 album that have found new life on the app.

While many TikTok music trends are driven by hashtag-friendly “challenges,” which encourage users to put their own spin on choreographed dances or copycat pranks, that wasn’t the case for Mother Mother’s decade-old songs. Figuring out why their catchy rock hooks suddenly took off is a mystery even the band hasn’t cracked.