The idea of living without the internet and being instantly connected to our news, music and memes is definitely something to hashtag as “first world problems,” but just think back to the days when the web was fresh and the idea of talking with friends without the use of a phone was new and crazy. Enter Brentalfloss. He took his name from what is a commonality now and has never looked back (keep reading and you’ll get it).
The man behind Brentalfloss takes the music of beloved video games and adds his own lyrics to the mix. Who knew that’d be something you could do? Well his thousands of Facebook fans and followers can’t be wrong, so keep on keeping on for more on his past, writing habits and fan analysis.
Kendra: Back in the day using AIM was the shit and that’s where the whole “Brentalfloss” came about, but were there any other nominees when you were coming up with your AIM name?
Brentalfloss: I guess I did have a few other brent-related puns as my Myspace handle that could count as runner ups: Brentral Park, Brenter of Attention, and Brentleman Caller, just to name a few.
Kendra: What was your first love out of comics and music?
Brentalfloss: Honestly, comics barely even count as a “love” for me. I enjoyed The Far Side and Bizarro growing up, but I never really got into comic books. The brentalfloss webcomic started as an experiment and lives on as an awesome–if unlikely–part of my overall brand.
Kendra: Your advice to songwriting was to write every day. The creator of The Big Bang Theory Chuck Lorre believes the same thing, so it appears that’s the key to it, right? With that, have you kept everything you’ve written over the years? I know I have notebooks filled from high school still lying around (I’m a little bit of a hoarder).
Brentalfloss: Generally, everything I’ve written is saved on at least one of my hard drives, yes 🙂 But at some point, it’s like a meal: It doesn’t matter if you remember every meal you ever ate, what’s important is that it kept you alive.
Kendra: I’ve run into numerous artists who just cover video game music, but you take it a step further and add lyrics. How’d you come to the conclusion that’s the kind of music you wanted to do?
Brentalfloss: Well, first I should say that the great thing about video game music is that it covers tons of styles. My new CD has rock, bluegrass, swing, blues, and jazz, and all but one of the songs are derived directly from video game tunes. That said, I basically just added lyrics to one video game tune (Mega Man 3 Title Theme), and people really liked it and responded to it more than they responded to anything else I had ever done, so I stuck with it.
Kendra: Do you think that Youtube has played a significant part in helping your style of music get out there?
Brentalfloss: I’ll put it this way: without Youtube, there would be no Brentalfloss as we know it. I could have done a ground game for years and introduced myself to audiences via live shows… I could have used some other method of distribution, but that would have taken a lot longer than the magical starmaker that is free internet video hosting.
Kendra: I’m really into studying fans of different genres and while there are obvious similarities, there are big differences as well. What do you think are some stand out qualities of fans of your style of music compared to say rock and hip hop?
Brentalfloss: Again, video game music is unusual in the fact that it is a genre, but not a style. It’s like saying “piano music”… a piano can produce infinite “styles” and still be producing “piano music.” Video game music is the same. As for the differences between my stuff and legit
rock and hip hop? I don’t have a preoccupation with seeming cool like rock singers do and I don’t spend 75% of my lyrics bragging about money and hoes like a lot of hip hop artists.
Kendra: You have some shows coming up, mostly east coast. Any possibilities of hitting the west coast this year?
Brentalfloss: Sure, if someone buys me a plane ticket from NYC.
Kendra: One belief about “geeks” and “nerds” on top of being into things like video games and cosplay is the idea of them being socially awkward when it comes to dating. So for those who do fall in that category, do you have any dating advice for those geeky folks out there?
Brentalfloss: I will say this: If you talk too much, try to ask more questions and listen more. If you’re too quiet and shy, force yourself to speak, and be open about your vulnerabilities; it takes a lot of guts to say “I’m a little nervous” when talking to a new person, but if they’re not
repulsed by you, it’ll be fine. Self-deprecating humor is a great tool, but so is plain old confidence. Most of the truly confident people in the world are jerks, but in general, it is advisable to learn how to fake confidence. Keep in mind that some people in this world are going to find you unattractive. It’s just a fact of life. In a related story, some people don’t like chocolate. I rest my case.
Kendra: Since this is Golden Mixtape, it’s time to make one! With you playing Nerdapalooza in August, we’d like you to make a mixtape of 5 songs you’d put on a mixtape for your road trip down to the show to get you psyched to play, go!