We had the good fortune of connecting with Robinton Hobbs and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Robinton, why did you pursue a creative career?
I’m either stupid or brave. Or both. But frankly, nothing else I’ve ever done has fit. I actually talked myself out of it in the beginning. Went to college and was about halfway through a history degree, facing down 20 years of lecturing bored high school kids about the Roman Empire, but I couldn’t do it. I bailed and got a degree in audio engineering instead and started making basement punk records. I’ve had a lot of odd jobs and false starts over the years but I always get called back to music. Nothing else matters as much to me. I have a lot of other hobbies and interests, but I could walk away from them in a heartbeat if I had to. Music won’t let me.
Can you open up a bit about your work and career? We’re big fans and we’d love for our community to learn more about your work.
These days, I am a film composer working most often with orchestral palates, but at my core I will always be a rock and roll dude. I cut my teeth playing in punk and metal bands and you can really hear that influence in everything I write. It took me a while to embrace that – as my career shifted I was afraid that I wouldn’t be able to write proper film music if it didn’t sound just like one of the famous composers, but I’ve really come to see it as one of my strengths. My mark of quality for my own writing is now, “Would I jam out to this?” It has to give me the same response as if it were blasting out of a marshall amp. Not the actual sound of the music itself, but in how it connects. I might be writing for an orchestra, or even a synth track, but I still write like it’s rock and roll.
If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
The beach is obviously a big one. I try to get in at least one beach day most months. It’s amazing to me how many people live in LA but never make it out to the ocean. I get that the traffic blows, but come on! I live in Laurel Canyon, so most of my friends are going to be subjected to a little rock and roll history tour while they are here. At the least a stroll through the canyon and maybe a stop off at the Country Store or maybe dinner from Pace. After that we can pop over Mulholland to the reservoir in Franklin Canyon. It’s a fantastic bit of nature in the middle of the city, with some decent hikes as well, and not near as crowded as Griffith or Runyon. Speaking of Griffith though, another visitor go to is the old zoo hike in the park. Just a quirky add to an otherwise simple trail. I’m a big fan of the actual LA Zoo as well. Finally there’s go to be night out. Being the rocker that I am this is most likely to include going to a show – especially if theres a decent one at one of the remaining venues on the Strip so that we can hit up the Rainbow as well for a jack and coke. Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
Without question I have to shoutout my partners at Joy Music House, and really our whole incredible team of composers. What we have built is not just a business, but a support network. Catherine Joy was my mentor for years before we started JMH. She gave me my first opportunities in this field, pushed me to take on roles I was intimidated by and believed in me when I couldn’t believe in myself. Catherine and my other partner, Joseph Carrillo, are my staunch comrades navigating this crazy industry. We’ve been on so many projects together at this point that I can’t imagine not having their input and companionship as part of anything that I do.