Working with the music industry has been something I look forward to every day. Booking bands at great venues, talking to musicians, and of course, watching them perform live. It’s so much fun that sometimes I have to remind myself that I have a job to do!
Music has a significant impact on most people. It tells a story about life and expresses so much more than just simply words. Sometimes it pulls a person from a dark place and gives them hope. That’s also what drives the nonprofit organization City House.
City House provides emergency shelter and transitional residential services to at-risk children and young adults. Youth who are subjected to abuse and neglect…the result is often homelessness. City House makes every effort to see the success of every child and young adult, focusing on developing the self-confidence he or she needs to improve every aspect of their life.
Recently I had the pleasure of becoming familiar with City House, and the members of the group D.Y.A. (Dallas Youth in Action), a local band who has dedicated their gigs to the benefit of City House through a series of shows called “City House Jam.” They shared with me a bit about their background and what it means to set up an event right here in Frisco.
Lifestyle Frisco: How did you learn about City House?
D.Y.A.: My girlfriend at the time (my wife now!) was a service group coordinator and introduced me to City House. We were right out of college so we connected pretty well with the teens staying there. I grew up in East Plano and most of the kids were moved into schools there, so we had that in common. We would bring dinner to them once a month and would just hang out with them, talking sports and music, etc. Just getting to know them and having fun while doing so. Sometimes we’d take them to play miniature golf or bowling. They were just regular kids like we were, yet having to deal with neglect and abuse at home.
LsF: How did you combine your love for music with your interest in supporting City House?
D.Y.A.: After hanging with the kids and really getting passionate about what City House was doing to help them, we decided to dedicate our musical hobby to raising awareness and funds for good organizations like them! We went from playing 1 hr sets in our 20’s in Deep Ellum (and pretending we were rock stars) to playing 3-4hr sets in the ‘burbs in our 30’s with a better motive and message! All the band fees and tips we get are given to City House.
LsF: What are some of the other venues that you play?
D.Y.A.: We typically play once a quarter as we all have full-time jobs. We started by putting together “City House Jam” in Haggard Park in Plano once a year back in 2011-2013, where our friends, family, and supporters could listen to us play as well as interact with the kids. In the past few years, we’ve played at Lion and Crown Pub in Allen, the Watters Creek amphitheater, The Frisco Bar, McSwiggans in Austin Ranch, Bryan Street Tavern in Dallas, and Taverna Rossa in Plano, to name a few. In our non-philanthropic days, we heavily played Deep Ellum at Liquid Lounge, Club Dada, and Curtain Club. I think our most interesting gig was being the musical guest at a retreat in a Buddhist Monastery in New Mexico last year! They heard of our message and wanted us to share our music with them! This was a once in a lifetime experience and now we get to play at the Frisco Rail Yard so for that we are truly excited!
LsF: You developed a passion for kids dealing with tough circumstances. Are there other housing facilities that you work with?
D.Y.A.: We typically raise awareness and funds for City House, but we get involved with jamming at Austin Street Shelter and The Bridge (homeless shelters) from time to time. Those shows are more about bringing love and positivity to the homeless through music.
D.Y.A.: City House is a local charity. They are an abused and neglected children’s shelter, operating for over 20+ years. They take in kids across the Metroplex in transition. Kids stay there anywhere from a couple weeks to a couple years. There are many similar shelters across Texas and the U.S.
LsF: You’re often referred to as City house Jam, but your name is actually D.Y.A., correct?
D.Y.A.: Yes, we are D.Y.A. (Dallas Youth in Action). Most of the time it stands for ‘Dumb, Young, and Arrogant’, lol. My name is Sachin (but everyone calls me Satch), I play guitar and sing also co-founder of the band. Madh is a co-founder of the band, singer and plays keyboards and bass. R-Patz is our drummer, Neil plays bass and Joshua is on lead guitar (he’s not able to make the upcoming gig, but typically plays with us.)
LsF: How can others get involved?
D.Y.A.: Get involved by spending time with at-risk kids! Either by taking them out to events or just hanging with them at City House. Or come see us play and learn about City House and donate! See how you can help at cityhouse.org. Our band’s site is cityhousejam.com.