Back in January 2012 I interviewed Brent Black of brentalfloss fame about his "with lyrics..." series, his trip to the London Comic Con, his comic and general gaming ventures. With his latest CD, "Bits of Me" due for a release very shortly, I thought it was time to get a bit of an update on this gaming maestro.
Q. Hey brentalfloss! The last time I interviewed you was back in January! How have things been for you since then?
BF: Pretty good. 2012 is a strange year for me, because I'm working on a lot of long-term projects that make it seem like I'm not releasing a lot of video content, when actually I'm spending time every day on videos that will raise the standard of my production values. So it's a lot of seed-planting, but not a lot of harvesting :)
Q. Your new CD, "Bits of Me" has just finished it's pre-order period and will be out soon! How was the response from fans to your pre-orders, and how do you expect the CD will do when released?BF: Once it's released, I expect it'll do very well. You can never really predict these things, but once it finally is released in all formats, I think the quality of the music alone will lead to good numbers business-wise.
Q. "Bits of Me" contains 18 songs, including some remastered tracks. What song on the album are you most impressed with?
BF; Probably "Baby Mario and Papa Yoshi." It has a cool jazzy arrangement, it tells a story, and it's just a very well-put-together piece of sound engineering.
Q. How was the studio experience?
BF: Fun, as always, but a lot of work. My sound engineer also acts as the director for the project, so he gets great performances out of me, but we have to switch between many hats during the process.
Q. You're quite busy in the touring/show front lately! What's the best part of doing shows?
BF: The best part of doing shows is when I surprise myself onstage. My shows tend to be very interactive, with audience members turning the between-song banter into a conversation, and occasionally things come out of my mouth that actually crack me up more than the audience. Those are my favorite moments of live shows.
Q. You must have met plenty of bizarre people during your travels. What's been your weirdest experience at a con/show?
BF: I have so many... recently, though, a 67-year-old woman told me she was my biggest fan, and my jaw dropped. I had no idea that anyone over 40 even knew who I was! :)
Q. So most of your songs are based on some excellent retro titles, such as Super Mario Bros. 2. Do you have any plans to combine the retro with some modern games in the near future?
BF: Well, it really comes down to which games I play and which games have good tunes. I'm currently playing through "Cave Story," which has a very retro feel although it was released in 2004. As I keep moving forward, I hope to cover a good mix of old-school and current-gen games.
Q. As well as your music, I've been enjoying reading your brentalfloss comic series since it started. How did this come about, and how have you found writing a regular comic?
BF: My co-writer Dan Roth approached me about a brentalfloss webcomic at the 2010 New York Comic Con, and after I read some of his ideas for strips, I was hooked. As for the task of writing, it's pretty easy since Dan and I generally write one strip per person per week. It's not always easy coming up with new ideas for a strip, but once you get us in a room, our collaborative energy produces a lot of [good and bad] ideas.
Q. And finally, of course you have the CD on it's way shortly, but what else are you planning in the near future?
"Bits of Me" can be ordered now via Level Up Studios.