The Soundtrack to Our Nightmares: A Brief Interview with The NoSleep Podcasts Brandon Boone

Ever since I could read, I could play an instrument. Though my mother wasn’t much of a musician, she wanted both my brother and I to be able to understand and create something beautiful (how’re those Portrait2clarinet lessons going for you, Gregor?). Well, I never became a big-time rock star or concert musician, but I did become a writer and, with that, I get the wonderful opportunity to interview some really impressive people. One of which is Brandon Boone.

Just a quick backstory on Brandon, for those who don’t know the name:

Brandon writes and records the music for The NoSleep Podcast, run by David Cummings. For anyone who has heard the podcast (and if you haven’t, HERE is great place to start – one of my favorite episodes! Or you visit HERE and HERE to hear the NoSleep stories from yours truly!), you know that the music is what makes these stories come to life. That life-bringer, in this case, is the topic of this post, Brandon. You can see much of his work on NoSleep, but also on his albums, Book of Winter and Sleepless. CLICK HERE to check those out! You can also support his work through his Patreon and his Bandcamp page. If you really like his work, then you might even want to look into his Bandcamp Fan Club which gives you access to all of his music as he makes it for $5 per month. Same deal goes for his Patreon! That’s a lot of music for the same price as a cup of Starbucks!

But enough of my rambling! Let’s get to the star of this show!

1. Tell us a little about yourself!

My name is Brandon Boone, and I write music! I live in Cincinnati and have been writing music professionally for a few years now.  I’m self taught (aside from 2 months of piano lessons) and it wasn’t until I got hooked up with The NoSleep Podcast that I started taking it seriously.  It was when I started working for David that I realized how much I love scoring.

2. What is it like creating the music for NoSleep Podcast?

It’s a dream come true!  I’ve been trying to write music for over a decade, and it wasn’t until I found this outlet that I started finding my place within music.  I never knew what to write about, now that the stories dictate that, the music just flows out of me. On a typical week I have about 4-5 days to score the episode, which means about 3-6 musical themes per story, so roughly 15+ pieces a week.  I don’t really plan any of it out, I just look at how the story changes and write themes that move along with it.  I choose some instruments that fit, and improvise until I like what it sounds like.

3. How did you get into music in the first place?

I started playing guitar as a teenager, I was obsessed with Led Zeppelin.  Toward the end of high school I moved onto some electronic music using fruity loops and cubase. Then, a few years ago I fell in love with the piano, it made music make sense to me. Now I listen to a lot modern classical or film scores, but Radiohead is my favorite band. I still love alt rock.

4. Most people don’t set out to write scores for Horror Fiction! How did you end up with a sweet gig like this?

My wife volunteers at a local radio station in Cincinnati, it caters to the blind and visually impaired.  She does sound engineering and voice acting there.  She was working with a director who needed some music for the radio play, and she recommended me.  We both still volunteer there and I still compose for them a bit, had I never taken that opportunity; I would have never ended up on NoSleep.

5. Are you a big fan of the horror genre?

I didn’t used to be!  The NoSleep Podcast changed that. I listened to the podcast since season 2, and it really made me fall in love with the horror genre.  Before the podcast I HATED horror, it was too much for me, my imagination would run wild and I’d freak myself out.  

6. What is Brandon Boone reading at the moment?

I’m currently working my way through Fundamentals of Music Composition by Arnold Schoenberg and Chopin in Paris by Tad Szulc.

7. So this album? What can you tell us about it?

My second album just released this past winter, it’s kind of a sequel to my album from 2015 called Sleepless. Sleepless and the new Book of Winter are basically my favorite pieces coverfrom The NoSleep Podcast.  I rework and remaster them a bit and release them on iTunes, amazon, Spotify, etc.  I find songs that I feel share a theme, Book of Winter is meant to be introspective, like you’re in a log cabin at a snowy mountaintop and just reflecting.  It’s meant to tell the story of the cycle from Winter to Spring.  There’s even an introduction written by Alice Lily and narrated by David Cummings.

8. So I know there was a big happy new addition to your family recently! How’s the new dad life treating you?

Dad life is great! As of the moment I’m barely 4 days in, but it’s the most amazing thing I’ve ever experienced. I’m hoping I’ll get to sleep again some day!

9. Is there anything else that myself and the readers should know about the ever-talented Brandon Boone?

Ha! I don’t know about ever-talented. I don’t know if anyone SHOULD know anything about me.  But I’ll share something that people seem to find surprising, I’m a huge Death Grips fan! If someone reading this isn’t familiar with Death Grips, just look them up. Trust me.

10. What’s the best way for folks to reach you?

My email address is Brandon@Wondroussound.com and my twitter is @Wondroussound either of those will work!

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