Hi I’m Darren Cooper…Writer, Musician, Creative.
It’s taken me a long time to be able to embrace those words. For too long I have hidden behind paralyzing fear, forcing me into a corner of complacency and inaction.
Even though I’ve had some success over the years, my perspective of it got lost in fear and uncertainty.
I’ve been creating music for over fifteen years. I have written and played on more than twelve albums with eight different artists. A few of those albums went on to worldwide distribution, and a couple of them even made their way to the music charts.
Over the years, I have been a music pastor, guitar teacher, studio engineer, producer, songwriter, and business owner. My goal in all these areas was to inspire others to create.
I believe art to be one of highest callings there is. It inspires. It heals. It connects. It brings out the beauty of the world. Nothing’s better than that!
Yet art can also be one of the scariest of places to live because of how vulnerable you have to be. Too often fear wins and art gets pushed aside in exchange for a “safer” place.
This site is a way for me to inspire and encourage you to push past fear and #CreateYourArt. Art that is so desperately needed in this world.
Come on, let’s #CreateYourArt!
To make sure you don’t ride the coattails of other creatives (like I did for so long), I will write about overcoming fear, finding your expression, and learning how to #CreatYourArt, no matter what medium you choose. While I’ll include topics outside of these categories, every post should inspire you to create beautiful art that has a true impact on the world. We. Need. YOU!
I will post at least once a week, but by subscribing via email you can be sure to never miss a post. And you can unsubscribe anytime.
I started playing guitar when I was thirteen. Like many musicians, I grew up playing in church when the “youth band” needed a bass player. I suddenly found myself a permanent member of the group. It wasn’t long before a buddy of mine approached me about playing in his band. While I didn’t really know exactly what that meant, it sounded cool (and I wanted to be cool). Of course, I agreed.
Little did I know the course of my life would be changed forever.
We practiced in my buddy’s basement with no lead sheet to follow or song to listen to and mimic. It was just me and the band, along with our young, creative ideas. It was new to me. I didn’t know what to do or where to start but, once I dove in, I found it breathtaking.
The first time my creative ideas were used in a song was like a high that can only be described as euphoric. It changed me. I walked out of that basement a different person.
That led to a variety of different musical endeavors from playing in “garage bands” to becoming a music pastor myself. That divine moment in my friend’s basement sent me down a new path, compelling me to create my art through the medium of music.
In 2012, I started Grizzly Music Company, which is a recording studio and music school on the west side of Indianapolis. Although I have since moved on from that endeavor, my goals have not changed. My desire is to inspire others to create the art that is inside of them and to share it with others so we all can see the beauty of the world around us.
I still play music as much as I can. Currently, I am the lead guitar player with the Aaron Pelsue Band. No matter what stage I find myself in, I will always remember that cold, damp basement where I discovered my inspiration. My hope is that you find your “basement,” too. I can only dream that what you read here will help you on that journey.
My family is everything to me. My mom and dad are the best in the world and taught me everything I know. My mom stayed home with us and my dad in a brilliant entrepreneur. I have an older brother Erik, who is ten years my senior, but who’s counting. He is married to his beautiful wife Mandy and they have three kids, Emma, Anna, and Austin.
I have a daughter, Story Cash, who gets prettier by the day. She is the joy of my life and the best thing that has ever happened to me. I can only hope that I can raise her as well as I was raised. I am a pretty lucky man!
In my free time, I love to listen to new records, learn about wine and play golf. I live in Indianapolis, Indiana, where I was born and raised. Go Colts!