Soulful pop from outer space.
Darien Bernard is an independent LA-based pop artist from Austin, TX. Growing up, he was constantly surrounded by the sounds of jazz and soulful music. “I knew very early on that music and performing was what I wanted to do in life, so I did everything I could to grow in it,” he says. “I've been singing and creating music for as long as I can remember. It started off in my grandparents' living room and in churches, which turned into nerve-wracking karaoke nights, then on to college acappella, to YouTube cover videos, all the way to me now making my own music.”
Darien started releasing music in 2019 when he was signed to his college's record label, UTalent Records. “I learned so much in such a short time: the experiences I made here were arguably the most pivotal for my journey,” he recalls. While with the label, Darien released his debut EP, ‘King.” For three years in college, Darien was a vocalist and lead soloist in his acappella group, One Note Stand. He says, “This is where my vocal skills and love for performing really stuck out. I was able to perform for audiences of 500+ people, which really proved to me that performing is what I needed to be doing for the rest of my life.”
After college, Darien moved to Los Angeles to pursue his career in music. His first single after moving to LA, ‘Ride’ is what pushed him into a new era and sound with his music. When asked what inspires him, he says “Growing up, I never had anyone who looked like me or identified with my identities speaking to me through song. Speaking to my lived experiences. Through my music, I want to give people my vision of the world - records to feel, see, and believe. Records that they can listen to and feel seen, heard, and understood.”
Darien is heavily inspired by nostalgia and memories when he’s making music and pulls influences from Majid Jordan, Ariana Grande, The Weeknd, and Tinashe. His style of writing is inspired by theirs as well as the old R&B and gospel music he listened to growing up.
As 2022 rounds off, Darien is more excited than ever to be releasing new music and exploring what’s next in store. His new Pop R&B single “Ecstasy” is dropping at the end of 2022. “This is the start of an entirely new sound for me. I want this record to make you feel like you can just let go and be free,” he says. “To feel excited, chased, and sexy.”