My Tiny House Journey as a Singer/Songwriter


What started out as a hobby, turned into a very fulfilling music career. Being a singer/songwriter has afforded me many travels, sights, places, and relationships!  The most unique opportunity to come from it so far has been an appearance on national TV!

In 2012, I approached my husband Rob with an insane idea to quit his job and we take to the road as full-time musicians together.  I thought maybe he would think I was joking at first, but he actually put thought into it and together we came up with a plan. We took a look at our finances and encountered some obstacles. We had a four bedroom house and a mortgage to match. Here is a picture of us when we first purchased the house…

And a full shot of the house from the street.

So yeah, we couldn’t keep that house on our traveling musicians’ salary. What excited us was the prospect of not being attached to a corporate job and not having to work 8 hours a day with only a small amount of vacation time for the year. We looked forward to the day we could just be free to travel to our shows and have the flexibility to do other things you can’t necessarily do with a traditional job. Selling the house was a no brainer and we were glad to do it. We downsized into a one-bedroom apartment in Nashville. We traveled every month and sometimes even twice a month to out of state shows. We enjoyed the freedom and still do today.

Eventually we decided to build a tiny house and downsize even more. The building process took about 6 months all together. We did everything ourselves even the plumbing and electrical. We were met with some very strong opposition from an unlikely source. It reminded me of a quote that says something like, ‘you know you’re doing something big when you face opposition.’ These definitely were some big changes and I felt like a fish swimming against the current. But I knew we were making decisions that fit our needs and desires. Clearly, you don’t have to do what everyone else is doing to be happy. Only you know what makes you happy.

Only you know what makes you happy. Click To Tweet

We were willing to go against the grain and our big decisions caught the eye of HGTV’s Tiny House Hunters! Everything happened really fast. One minute we were talking with a producer about our lifestyle ideas and the next minute we were going through an audition process. They sent us to Colorado to do part of the filming, and then came to our location to do a second part of the filming. In the meantime we were trying to meet strict deadlines to be ready for the final reveal. We started with just a trailer on wheels and, except for a couple friends and family members here and there, we built everything ourselves.

Here is a picture from the build. You can see the piping and the electrical boxes. One question we get a lot is, ‘Do we have construction experience?’ The answer is no. We spent a lot of time at the library, watching how-to videos, and winging it. How did we do it?  Necessity breeds ingenuity. If you need to get something done, you will find a way to get it done.

We appeared on HGTV’s Tiny House Hunters Monday May 1, 2017 and the episode showed first hand what our experience was like and why we did what we did.

 

This experience has been life giving! Ultimately we were faced with two choices. Work the job and live the American Dream, or change our lifestyle so we can live our own dream. We decided to figure out how to live our own dream. I just wish we could have figured this out sooner.

 


About Anitra Jay

Anitra Jay is an acoustic soul singer-songwriter based in Houston, TX. She tours regularly up and down the US from Vermont to Texas and everywhere in between. Her music is a sultry down to earth blend of soul, pop, and gospel. After being laid off from her job in 2007, Anitra decided to pursue a career in music. She took her educational experiences in Public Relations and her professional background in marketing and applied it full force to her music. She's found significant success in establishing a lasting fanbase using her special brand of marketing techniques which she shares freely with other artists. In addition to being a full-time performer, Anitra runs TheCraftyMusician.com, a blog for indie artists sharing actionable tips and advice on how to promote, develop, establish a fanbase, and more. Her passion is to inspire other musicians and build a community of like-minded independent artists to encourage and promote successful careers in the arts. She appeared on HGTV's Tiny House Hunters in May of 2017 to share her music story and her Tiny House Journey with the world. Follow Anitra on Twitter - @IndieArtistsDIY and @Anitra_Jay. Join the mailing list to get practical DIY tips and tricks in your inbox - http://buff.ly/2gSwptO.

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