In Memoriam: Patricia Rosa, Mother of Gojira’s Duplantier Brothers

In the July 2013 Decibel, Justin Norton interviewed Patricia Rosa, mother of Joe and Mario Duplantier of Gojira for our recurring “Metal Muthas” column. Patricia passed away two days ago, so to honor her, we’re reprinting that interview. Our condolences to the Duplantiers.

Tell us a little about yourself.

I was born in Madison, WI. I came to France on vacation when I was 20 and fell in love with a French artist. I’ve never set foot in the States since. I teach yoga, love the sea and the woods, people, fire, good movies, books and all music.

What is Ondres like?

It’s a calm town in the southwest of France near Bayonne and Biarritz.

What were Joe and Mario like growing up?

Baby Joe stood up at nine months and walked, then never sat down again. As a child, he was always active, very creative. Sensitive, gentle, he observed everything with quiet intensity, took in the world without commentary or judgment, just stepped back and watched. There was some secret force within him, some unusual maturity. Mario, five years younger, was an expansive, funny, lovable, carefree and open child. Spunky and outspoken, he always respected others. He was popular. I remember dropping him off at school when he was five and seeing a flock of kids running to meet him chanting “Ma-rio, Ma-rio!” like a drumbeat, in unison.

Do you know how Joe and Mario got interested in heavy metal?

Not really. Our home was always full of music: blues, pop, Fado, Shankar, Mozart, Chopin, Piaf, you name it. All music, actually, except hard rock. I have no idea how my kids got interested in heavy metal. Maybe they were open to everything, more than I was.

Were there other kids around Joe and Mario interested in the same music, or was it just them?

I don’t know. I was mainly interested in their hearts and minds.

Tell us something about your sons that most people wouldn’t expect.

You would have to tell me what people expect first. As a mother, I don’t know too much about the details of their private worlds. What I know is that there was a lot of love and beautiful energy circulating at home. Being around them all the time was exciting and delightful, never a dull moment. I was lucky to be their mom.

What do you think of their success?

I think they work hard, it’s their job and they do it well.