The River of Calm - Beyond The Music Podcast - featuring Danielle Archer of The Artist Minds

February 22, 2022 - 02:11 PM
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Music has a way of opening our hearts and helping us feel more connected to others, to ourselves, and to the world around us. As a result, it is a direct line to our emotions and state of being.

Individuals in the music industry are making music that heals others, but more often than not, their own emotional and mental health needs are being neglected. And as a result, the music industry as whole faces mental health issues and crises in both their personal and professional lives. 

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Dr. Danielle Archer is a multi-state licensed mental health therapist, coach, consultant, and advocate. She has over 12 years of clinical experience and specialty training in trauma, grief, self-harm, eating disorders, mindfulness, co-dependency, anxiety, depression, and conflict resolution. 

The"daily grind" from working in the industry can exacerbate (or in some cases create) issues with depression, anxiety, loneliness, frustration, self-care, balancing home and work life, eating disorders, substance use, and self-harm.

In a 2018 study from the Music Industry Research Association, 50 percent of musicians reported battling symptoms of depression, compared with less than 25 percent of the general adult population. Nearly 12 percent reported having suicidal thoughts — nearly four times the general population. According to a 2019 study published by Swedish digital-distribution platform Record Union, the numbers are even starker: It found that 73 percent of independent musicians have battled stress, anxiety, and depression. More recently (in pre-pandemic 2020), a major research study through the Tour Health Research Initiative found:

  • 34% of touring professionals suffered from clinical levels of depression,

  • 70% reported trouble sleeping,

  • 83% reported feeling overworked, 

  • 79% reported experiencing significant worry regarding their financial stability,

  • 45% reported drinking alcohol regularly, 

  • 74% reported that touring strained their relationships.

  • 26% reported serious suicidal ideation,

  • 58% reported losing a tour colleague to suicide.

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"The music industry as a whole needs to genuinely make a conscious effort to look after people's physical and mental health." -  Sam Fender

"What does a safe and inclusive music industry look like to you?: Labels/management looking after mental/physical health." - She Shreds Media

"I have had bouts of situational depression and my heart was broken last year because, unknowingly, I put so much validity in the reaction of the public, and the public didn't react in the way I had expected to…which broke my heart. I was with someone recently who asked: ‘Well, don't you think that if you do too much therapy it will take away your artistic process?' And I told them: ‘The biggest lie that we've ever been sold is that we as artists have to stay in pain to create.'"- Katy Perry

"It's very important we create conversations, we take away the stigma, and that we stand up for ourselves if we're dealing with the symptoms of a mental illness." - Demi Lovato 

"There is a lot of shame attached to mental illness, but it's important that you know that there is hope and a chance for recovery." - Lady Gaga

“In the wake of the tragic, premature deaths of Avicii and Lil Peep, the music industry needs to do a better job at treating mental illness. Again, and again, there are warning signs and early cries for help that we cannot’s not just the artists who need help, it’s the executives in the business as well. So I’m calling on every executive, manager, and artist representative with a friend, client, or employee in need of help to act. Let’s come together as an industry and provide reliable health and wellness support within all circles of our business. We owe the world our best effort to avoid another tragic loss.”- Nick Jarjour

Show Notes:


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Fame Hackers

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The River of Calm Beyond The Music Podcast Episode #28

Guest: Dr. Danielle Archer

Host: Ed Bazel


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