Bridging the Cultural Divide
Dart Music International is a 501(c)3 nonprofit, founded in 2008 in Austin, Texas. We introduce people in our part of the world to the modern face of people and cultures from around the globe through cool indie/rock/pop music. Our programs make it financially and logistically possible for artists to travel to our part of the world while promoting personal interactions between peers from different countries through the common bond of music. Since 2008 DMI has worked with more than 50 artists representing more than two dozen countries and every inhabited continent. Our free concerts and community programs have reached tens of thousands of people across Texas, New Mexico, Oklahoma, Arkansas, and Louisiana.
The mission of DMI is to enrich the cultural quality of life for all members of our community, irrespective of socio-economic status, by collaborating with international musical artists to introduce their culture to the people of our region. Our mission is important because the musicians we work with have a populist, "every man" perspective on their own society and culture that is often very different from the generally accepted view in the United States. This is a message that dispels stereotypes and better informs our world-view in a manner that resonates with students, young professionals, and socially active people in the US and around the world.
Dart Music International has quite possibly been the best organization I have ever been involved in. Through Dart, I have been exposed to so
many different cultures and ideas through one common interest; music. I am able to take beliefs and traditions that I have learned from people
from all over the world, and apply them to my daily life. Dart Music International has allowed me to gain a unique global perspective on the
inner workings of the music industry, and also has given me the opportunity to contribute to society by doing what I love; working with musicians.
It is such an amazing feeling to begin a conversation with a drummer from Spain, and although you may speak two entirely different languages,
you can still see their face light up in recognition when you mention The White Stripes.. No matter how large the language barrier, no matter
how great the cultural differences, music still provides a way for people to communicate with one another. It has been said that music is the
universal language, and after working with Dart Music International, I must say that I agree one hundred percent.
- Lauren Burton, DMI volunteer and Anderson High School class of 2010
DMI helps minimize the financial and logistical burdens of our member artists by subsidizing costs while increasing opportunities for audience exposure and income. We help bands make immigration arrangements with greater lead-time and save the bands thousands of dollars or more in visa and travel fees. Lodging and rental expenses are mitigated through our local contacts. DMI bands can earn money while in the US either by attaining the proper visa with our sponsorship or with DMI serving as the local business agent. The local knowledge and contacts of DMI helps artists place merchandise and play performances in the most appropriate venues, giving them the best opportunity to be seen by their target audience. We have agreements with service companies that provide substantial discounts for DMI bands. Through DMI, the artists have a local base of operations where they can post materials ahead of time. Many potential stressors are neutralized simply by having a trusted local source for the best places to shop, eat, relax, and enjoy the experience.
The point of doing this is to help people here - students, young professionals, regular working folks like us - have the opportunity to experience and interact with our peers from other countries & cultures. Rock/pop music as that common ground we all share that opens the door to learn more about these "foreign" cultures. The people here get the chance to talk to the bands and understand that we have a lot more in common with these kids than we would otherwise know. In return, the bands take home a lot more than just memories of a fun & successful visit.