The Artist Life was started by Ian Blackwood (formerly of Jersey, The Fullblast and Always Outnumbered) on vocals and guitar, and Dean Richards (formerly of Fallen Year and Dreams Among Stars) on guitar and vocals in January 2006. This came as the result of the two discussing the possibility of starting the band and writing some music together in late 2005. They would soon add Andy Crawford (formerly of Beaumont) on bass and Chris Danner (formerly of Grade and To The Lions) on drums. Within a year, the band had recorded a 5 song demo of which they gave away over 1000 copies in Southern Ontario. They also played several one-off concerts with the original line-up, though they never played outside of Ontario. The Artist Life played their first show April 17, 2006 at the Bovine Sex Club in Toronto with The Video Dead.
By fall 2006, the band parted ways with drummer Chris Danner for undisclosed reasons and temporarily had friends fill in until a permanent replacement could be found. Later that fall, Andy Crawford would leave the band following the birth of his first child. This left just Ian and Dean, who decided to enter the studio and record an EP with their friend David Palmer (formerly of The Stickup). They released the Living EP in early 2007 as a free download on the band’s website.
Following the release of the Living EP, Jake Parsonson (formerly of Madrid is Burning) joined as the full-time drummer and Chuck Leach (formerly of Jude the Obscure and At the Mercy of Inspiration) joined as the permanent bassist. This line-up would immediately begin touring around the country and venturing into the United States in support of the Living EP. The band also began to receive some radio play and video play of “Waiting Room” on MuchMusic. The band’s song “Piss test” was used in a West49 television commercial. The success of Living led the radio station Punk-o-Rama Edge 102 to name The Artist Life the “Up and coming band of 2008” in January 2008.
After the success of the Living EP, the band hit the studio again to record 2 demo songs to pitch to labels. Following an article in AP Magazine, the band was approached by Canadian Record Label Underground Operations, who showed great interest in the band. Soon afterwards, the band was signed to Underground Operations in September 2008. The band promptly finished recording their second EP Let’s Start A Riot, which was released October 28, 2008 on Underground Operations, marking the band’s first official label release. Their second video for “Sleep So Sound” gained the band even more street credit. And their third music video for their title track “Let’s Start A Riot” will be directed by actor Jason Mewes (Clerks) on September 1, 2009. Since its release, 102.1 The Edge offered them their second FU Award nomination, this time for Song of the Year, Japan’s Boundee Records signed on for a Japanese release, MTV Live witnessed a raucous studio performance and Chartattack.com raved after their sold-out CMW appearance.
This summer The Artist Life is in Ontario for Cutting Edge Music Festival and in Eastern Canada for a stretch of dates with The Snips and Brights to coincide with the digital release of “Let’s Start A Campfire” the acoustic counterpart to LSAR.
In between tours the band has been writing and demoing what will be the full-length follow-up to LSAR whose release date is not yet scheduled.
The band broke up on February 1, 2012.