Thanks for the opportunity to share the music I enjoy listening to while I do art. Whether I’m working on comic pages or a personal project, music always plays an important role in my creativity. I’m currently working on the following comic book series: OathBound (Loophole Comics) with writer & co-creator Kevin Cuffe, PsychoPath (ScapeGoat Press Inc.) written By Stefani Manard, and ASTROPUNK (Think Alike Productions) which is created and written by Kenneth Centers and Rob Farinholt.
To be honest, I have always felt music and art go hand and hand. It’s amazing how well they can complement each other, like a perfectly synchronized dance. When I was young, I’d read my comics while listening to The Doors, Whitesnake, and Van Halen. This soon evolved into anything composed by John Williams, Danny Elfman, Jerry Goldsmith, and James Horner. Nowadays it’s Miles Davis, Seatbelts, Portishead, Beastie Boys, and Hans Zimmer, just to name a few.
It wasn’t until recently that I found out, after talking with others artists I’ve met recently, that they do the same! It was nice to realize I’m not the only one. I mean…who doesn’t like music, right? Anyways, moving on. People may be expecting a lot of Spaghetti Western references, but I enjoy a rather broad range of music. So, let’s get to it!
#1: "Black Milk" by Massive Attack
I seriously love this jam; it’s smooth and really helps me relax when I’m tense. I get that way when I over think panels or I’m inking pages. (Which, to this day, is still intimidating to me.) It’s a beautiful track and I have to thank Kristina, my wife, for turning me on to this band!!
#2: "Bloody Christmas" from the L.A Confidential Original Motion Picture Score by the late Jerry Goldsmith.
To be honest I have this thing for Goldsmith. His work is so tight! His score for The 13th Warrior is INSANE!!! If you don’t believe me, just listen to the track titled “The Horns of Hell” then come at me! [Laughs] Anyways that particular song captures the energy of a good action scene and was my go to when I was drawing Astropunk issue #1. It grabs you and shakes you up, but then brings you softly back down with that Noir feel? It is an intense opening track, especially if you are drawing a Sci-Fi Noir!
#3: "The Mexican" by Babe Ruth
This is one dope song! Makes sense why tons of hip-hop artists sample this track. I love listening to this song not only while drawing OathBound , but I have this song on my playlist for driving around town too. It’s just a damn fun song. I love Janita Haan’s voice. It’s so gritty, and yet, seductive at the same time. I was surprised this song was featured on the Netflix show The Get Down I mean, it makes sense, but still. I love this album for many reasons, but the “For A Few Dollars More” cover at the end just takes the cake!
#4 "Main titles from the Blade Runner Original Motion Picture Score" by Vangelis
The first track just immediately throws you right into this dark, crazy future! It’s a beautiful score and it makes me want to draw crazy landscapes of futuristic buildings with ships flying all around. This album was a mainstay for me while working on Astropunk issue #1. I think it’s also why I wanted to do an homage (promotional poster) based on the famous Blade Runner movie poster (which we did).
#5: "Bane Action 103 BPM Mezzo Suite from the Dark Knight Rises (Ultimate Complete Score)" by Hans Zimmer
Ok, so I’m a huge Chris Nolan fan and I love what Zimmer did with the scores for his films. But, out of all of them, the Batman scores are my favorite…all day, every day!!! I mean, I love them with a passion! I have every edition (special or otherwise) of this movie series. I love drawing to these scores because the feelings I get are so complex that it makes me want to draw anything and everything I possibly can. I can’t even begin to tell you which song is my favorite because it’s all of them. But this is one of my top five… so, it’s my #5.