My name is Darius Eugene House; better known as “IamDerby” to many and as a 25 year old independent musician/ artist. The lifestyle of a traveling musical artist a very moderate and highly demanding one. On average, I travel at least 27 times a year.
I’ve been in this profession for the last 13 years but I’ve just started traveling around the world while performing just in the beginning of 2017. That number may seem truncated but the duration of my travel time is two weeks to a month every time. I get paid commission for my performing services as my team and I charge businesses that book me to come and perform at their establishments – four hundred fifty dollars by the hour. If I’m at an event and I’m booked for performing for more than sixty minutes; and it doesn’t have to be a full two hours; I’ve already made nine-hundred dollars like that. I’m normally never booked for more than two hours a performance and as an independent upcoming artist I can guarantee the majority of the rest aren’t either.
As I travel for this business that I’m a part of a lot of the time I am booked with an all expense paid trip. If the trip is not paid for then my team factors in that cost that it takes to have to get me to where ever we are going. Throughout my independent career, I have had the the luxury to travel to Atlanta, New York City, Upstate New York, New Orleans, Washington D.C, North Carolina, and Texas just to name a few. I have even toured in my own state all around Virginia. I have been blessed to work with and opening up concert show performances for many small and larger well known national artists and industry executives.
Last year my gross pay for paid performances alone was $14,157. That may not seem as much but for an independent musician/ artist that still finds the time to work a “nine to five” day job that’s a pretty big heck of an accomplishment I’d think myself.
The lifestyle is not as lavish as many may see it to be from the outside looking in. While it’s not a bad lifestyle it’s still budgeting that has to be taking into account in order to come out with a decent profit. As stated before, for the most part everything is all expenses paid but frequently when travel requires to travel by air, at landing my team and I are responsible for our own rental cars. Driving in a “hoopty” is not an option but I’m contrary to popular belief, renting the most luxurious car isn’t always the case either. We find what we call a “nice point A to point B” vehicle(s) that can fit ourselves and luggage with out having to break our pockets. Food is another expense we have to tackle ourselves and that can become expensive too unless you’re taking the unhealthy fast food option. Grocery shopping and having food and water on hand is a necessity whenever I travel. When touring as an artist or musician, there’s a lot of work going on at every hour of the day.
I have a strict schedule in which makes for a strict morning routine for myself to get my daily personal goals met. I often will wake up early as 4am and eat a healthy breakfast which comes from my groceries and then workout for about an hour at the nearest gym. Then I’ll go back to my room wash up and call my daughter and my family back home to start the day off with a conversation with them to let them know they’re missed and to keep them updated on my status. By time 6:45am arrives my manager, Domonic R. Price, who I’d like to add that is also a Reality TV actor from the newest Hulu series “Back In The Groove”, comes to me with all of my daily itineraries which includes but not limited to, interviews, show practices, sound checks, meet and greets, budgeting, and a host of various other meetings and things. Typically the hotel room is a place of rest and not sleep. On a good night I’ll be able to get as much as eight hours of sleep and anything other than that is six or less.
So far into my career I, “IamDerby”, have been featured on major blogs such as The Source, LA Weekly, ThisIs50, Earmilk, and many more. I’ve accumulated over ten-thousand followers on social media and I’m currently in the process of awaiting my interview with the nationally known podcast across the world “The Breakfast Club” to release.
In conclusion, the lifestyle of an independent musician/ artist on the road is a very moderate and demanding one. Alot if people watching from the outside looking in don’t see all the hard work, dedication, times missed with loved-ones, or anything like that. All they see is the rewards, praises, and glamour that come from it. This business is most definitely takes lot to handle and to keep up with but if you can manage that you can also be very much successful in it.