My full name is Dominik Boncza-Skrzynecki, but I go by Dom Sky. My family originates from Poland, though we emigrated to the United States when I was a small child. My parents didn’t even know how to speak English when we arrived, but despite the challenges, they provided for all six of their children and laid the foundations for opportunities that they themselves never had. I was filled with admiration for their loving dedication to our family and I felt the desire and responsibility to do something special with my life, perhaps partly as an act of gratitude.
Ironically enough, my adult journey began by leaving my family and has continued to lead me away from them, at least geographically. Upon finishing high school I moved to Poland to study in a monastery. It was hard for my parents to accept the location I chose, since it was the very country they left due to the oppression they experienced during the troubles in the mid 80s. Although, the decision to enter this kind of life was very impulsive, I’ve never regretted it. In the 18 months I spent there finishing off my teen years I had the opportunity to ask myself important questions and listen for the answers in the silence. Having been brought up in the city and suburbs of Chicago, the experience of working the land on a monastery farm in rural Poland was profound.
Thus began my life of traveling, as I became more and more intrigued by this journey “inwards”. The faith I grew up with was a great precursor for evolving and creating a life that aims to extract its absolute essence. That’s the path I am on regardless of where I am and what I’m doing, and I’m perfectly content knowing I might never get down to the purest form of the human experience, but I will die trying.
Not that it doesn’t have a mysterious element to it, but it just felt right to be a part of it. To listen to it, to create it, to perform it and to share it with others.
After leaving the monastery I pursued two degrees in music. The curriculums themselves were helpful, but the most important thing I learned was that setting aside time in your life to focus on your passions is the only way to turn them into a viable way of life. One doesn’t necessarily have to go to University to do that. That was just my method of keeping myself accountable for pursuing my particular passion. I had a blast dabbling in everything from song writing, to engineering records, to fronting a rock band, to coaching others in music, to organising music events and creating jobs for fellow musicians. I recognised day in and day out that there was a power to music, a power to connect. I still don’t quite understand how it works, but it’s something worth pursuing.
GOVARDO formed during a time when I once again decided to change my environment and moved to Goa, India with a friend who had some contacts in this region. Disconnected from the Internet and completely letting go of the expectation to create anything while I was there, I allowed ideas and notions to flow through me freely and see what catches, what “remains”. This would become the future stuff from which I would draw my inspiration.
As it happened, my friend Jack, whom I had previously known only on a superficial level seemed to be on a surprisingly similar journey to my own. We spent countless hours exchanging stories and ideas and eventually concluded that we must be some kind of ancient brothers. The music naturally flowed out of this connection and understanding. Both of us were prepared to engage in a music project that wasn’t just about singing and playing guitar, but embodying a lifestyle which told a story and shared a message. So we immediately set to work, motivated by each other’s talents and dedication.
We’ve been playing together for three years now, and have managed to create a unique sound and build a very active following, which continues to encourage us in progressing forward. We now play concerts all around the world, and have fans writing to us daily with inspiring stories and messages.
We opened our hearts and that’s what we receive in return. To me, that feels like success.
The struggles are always changing depending on the circumstances. Currently, I’m finding it increasingly more challenging not having a home base. It’s difficult to maintain relationships and nurture other passions. We’re currently working on a way of minimising touring to certain times of the year, so we can also have steadier periods as well. It’s important to take care of yourself, and to make sure each person in the project has what they individually need to thrive.
The simple answer is life, more accurately, my reflections about life and its many colours. As mentioned before, I often take breaks from exerting energy and in the relaxation I find the clarity to capture and manifest ideas that are floating all around us. I call it “input time”, it’s when I take walks in the forest, read books, or watch films or have conversations with strangers. I fill the bathtub of my soul with all these things and then I just sit and soak in it. The sum of my experiences and who I am as a character is a kind of filtration system, which then distils the essence of all this input and eventually drips out as a unique fragrance.
Other times the songs flow directly out of a strong emotion. They are things that need to be expressed in real time.
I would be involved in childhood education. I believe the school systems are designed to create obedient members of society, but they lack in methods to develop and nurture people’s individual spirits.
Many of the larger problems we face in today’s world boil down to this neglect in the early years of human development. I hope to find like-minded people and pursue this passion at some point as well.
My biggest quandary is love. I recognise it’s the cornerstone of human life and I struggle with its nature. It is always accompanied by hurt and suffering, which is very difficult to accept. I want to learn to love in the best way I can.
I never really had any fear so it didn’t feel like a risk at the time. Looking back now, I suppose I could have ended up in a bad place, but I always had enough trust and faith to learn from my mistakes and so taking risks became a way of life. There was nothing to fear.
My main advice is quite biased because I’ve found it to be the most valuable thing in my life, and that is the pursuit of spiritual development. Getting to know yourself and learning to love yourself. A solid foundation – acceptance and gratitude for your humanity in all its limits as well as its gloriousness – will allow you to find true success. Listen to your intuition – that voice inside of us is one of the greatest gifts we have. Use it.
I would like to continue exploring the power of music and its connection through this journey that I’m on. In the future I’d like to seek out special talents in other people and provide the means and opportunities for others to shine.
I think anything can inspire a person if they choose to appreciate it. The more I appreciate, the more inspired I am.
I mentioned before that I believe education is the biggest issue. I don’t even worry about all the other ones, because I know the root lies in how we raise our children. We need to pay more attention and be more innovative in how we educate the young ones.