We had the good fortune of connecting with Brandi Thomas and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Brandi, why did you pursue a creative career?
Well, being a kiddo in the 90’s I grew up watching all of the 90’s Disney movies. Mulan, Tarzan, Hercules, you name it, I watched it. When I was around six, I remember I was sitting on the kitchen floor watching the Lion King and heard “King of Pride Rock” by Hans Zimmer for the first time. I still remember the feeling that washed over me back then when I heard it. Just this overwhelm of emotions as Simba climbs Pride Rock, and eventually makes it to the top. And then in the end credits I heard Elton John singing “Can You Feel the Love Tonight.” It was while that song was playing that I told my mom, “I want to play piano like that.” From that moment I just couldn’t live without playing an instrument or singing, or making some sort of noise!
But really, the reason I’ve always wanted to pursue film scoring is because those films gave me such an awesome gift growing up – the feeling of hope. That if you work hard and do what’s right, things will get better, no matter how unlikely it may seem in that present moment. I want to help filmmakers give that gift back to people who are struggling today. At the very least, I want to help give those people an escape.
Please tell us more about your work. We’d love to hear what sets you apart from others, what you are most proud of or excited about. How did you get to where you are today professionally. Was it easy? If not, how did you overcome the challenges? What are the lessons you’ve learned along the way. What do you want the world to know about you or your brand and story?
A career in music is never an easy one, but I love every second of it. I think the biggest lessons I’ve learned along the way are to work hard and in a balanced way, don’t listen to fear, and to just be yourself regardless of what anyone else thinks or says. It’s hard, but I certainly try to live by that every single day.
I’m really excited for the future. I know that the pandemic is still going on, but one day it will be over, and I’m so excited to see what the post-COVID world has in store for me. It’s obviously been challenging for everyone, me included, but I am grateful that it allowed me the opportunity to delve into different things creatively that I may not have tried otherwise. Adversity is fuel for art in my opinion. I can’t say a lot about the things I’m working on right now, but I’m definitely allowing myself the opportunity to explore my weirdness and infuse it into my work – put it that way for now.
Let’s say your best friend was visiting the area and you wanted to show them the best time ever. Where would you take them? Give us a little itinerary – say it was a week long trip, where would you eat, drink, visit, hang out, etc.
Some of my favorite places in the city so far are the Santa Monica Pier, Maccheroni Republic, Tatsu Ramen, ArcLight Cinemas, EightyTwo, Little Tokyo, Beverly Hills (I love pretty much the entire westside), and Universal Citywalk.
Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
I’m really thankful for the people I learned from at Remote Control Productions during the time I was a runner there. I have to thank the Stage 32 platform for giving me the ability to find some of my earliest projects and helping me learn things about the industry that I certainly wasn’t going to learn while I was in college. I was mentored for a while by Timothy Andrew Edwards. He’s one of the good ones. He really cares about educating and helping, and you never have to worry about him not being straightforward with you.
I also have to thank my educators for instilling passion for music in me, and the discipline to help me along a career in music: Charlie Rankin, Chris Creswell, Martin Gaines, Professor Gaber, Jaime Santana, and Chandler Bridges.