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Iman Europe and The Agenda chat mental health, music, Web3 and The Homies DAO

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Talk to any musician who has “made it,” and they’ll say that achieving fame is both a gift and a curse. While success in entertainment can obviously bring many positives, it also carries the pressure to stay relevant, the worry of constantly needing to stay connected to fans, and the loss of freedom and privacy that comes with being a regular Joe — all of which can be utterly exhausting. Add a jam-packed events schedule that robs artists of the time to detox and socialize, and fame begins to look like just as much a burden as it may be a blessing.

On the flip side, those aspiring to break through and finally go mainstream deal with the pressure of an uphill climb and the potential outcome that after all the struggle, there might not be a light at the end of the tunnel.

For this reason, mental health, wellness and feeling like one is plugged into a community are things all creators need to allocate time to, and The Homies DAO is focused on just that.

On Episode 17 of The Agenda podcast, hosts Ray Salmond and Jonathan DeYoung speak with singer and The Homies DAO founder Iman Europe about how the collective is using Web3 to bring artists together to focus on wellbeing.

A safe space for artists to breathe, relax and socialize

During the conversation, Europe detailed how lonely being a musician can feel and how difficult it can be to maintain social connections, given that sometimes it seems like family members are constantly hitting you up for money and perks, and strangers you connect with might have the ulterior motive of getting special benefits thanks to their new-found friend’s fame.

“I know a lot of artists felt very burnt out last year and felt like they couldn’t find their footing oftentimes because everything was moving so fast in Web3,” she said. “And so I saw the need for wellness in the space, and I also was needing it. I was juggling being an artist and the head of artist relations of Sound.xyz, and it was a lot. They were two full-time jobs, and I wasn’t making enough time for myself and my wellness, and I saw the effects of that.”

This inspired Europe to found The Homies DAO. “When I got to the end of the year, I knew I wanted to focus this year on wellness more and on being able to give that back to myself and also creating space for artists to do the same.”

When asked about the type of wellness and community activities Homies DAO members could participate in, Europe mentioned that the decentralized autonomous organization (DAO) provides a safe space and community where creators participating in the music industry can socialize, unwind, meditate, work out and engage in activity that offers a sense of community.

“We’re hosting our first event at the end of this month, the Homies Hangout, where we’ll have different forms of wellness. So it’ll be physical wellness — we’ll start with exercise, riding the bikes and spinning. This will be hosted at Burn Cycling. So we’ll start off with that, and then we’ll take a break and then come back for a sound bath, which is spiritual wellness. And then we’ll do some affirmations, and we’ll have someone come in and lead a group therapy session where we can all kind of talk together and talk about mental wellness and different resources to bettering that.”

As for the DAO’s future plans, “We plan to do a few things like monthly meetups like that, but also monthly meetups online where we’re able to just check in with each other and just have a space for that,” said Europe, adding:

“We later plan to do like educational content and just creating different content to bring more people on-chain. We want to create and mint projects through our DAO with the artists, maybe based around wellness. And our hopes are later to expand to offline retreats for artists, artist residencies.”