Incubus' Brandon Boyd: The Artist

An in-depth look at Brandon Boyd through his career and stages of musical adoption.

Ultimate Guitar

Brandon Boyd, of the band Incubus, is an amazing human being, from his ability to write some of the most beautiful songs you will ever hear, to his non-comparable will to write poetry and draw some of the most amazing art that has ever been published by 'just a musician'.

The 23-year-old star started out as one of four high school buddies growing up in Calabasas, CA. Brandon and his band started jamming at age 14, in his garage. The band wanted to play in clubs but couldn't because they didn't have the money. Then by "fate" says Boyd, one of the band members found a $100 bill on the ground and got set up with their first gig. Then they started thinking of the name which was "time consuming and challenging, but fits" says Boyd. Incubus stems from the word "incubi," which means incubate, which the band thought was more in the sense of an idea or pattern incubating until coming to fruition, kind of like the band.

Incubus needed to get a CD started so they looked for record companies that would help them. Immortal Records saw that Incubus was a "touring live band, and not an out of the box hit single sensation, they had intentions of building up." In 1997 the band released the 'Enjoy Incubus' demo. Then they completed several mini-tours in support of it. During that period, Incubus was perfecting the new songs for their full-length debut, S.C.I.E.N.C.E.; the group named it that because they were 'able to experiment.' "We were able to take our time and get everything to sound the way we wanted it to-weird science and energetic funk." That's when Boyd started to be a teenage girl's icon.

Boyd's physical appearance is entrancing to the female gender, and just as much so to a minority of the male gender! From his warmly tanned body to those 'black earrings' he has made so famous, Brandon Boyd is a sight women all over the world would love to wake up to on a warm, sunny morning. His looks helped the band make their fame made as his face was plastered on many a female magasine in the states and with the pictures came the band, and the music closely following.

Boyd has favorites just like everyone else. Boyd's favorite pick up line is, "If I said you have a beautiful body, would you hold it against me?" His favorite color is purple and he does not have a relationship status. He loves lying by the beach because quote "I can think there and it's peaceful, I can write and sing music there and be totally comfortable." Boyd enjoys writing and reading books. His newest book released is 'White Fluffy Clouds.' Boyd thinks that the coolest thing in the world is quote "being on the Ozzfest in the middle of the day, with 10,000 sweaty people drinking beer, singing along."

Performing is a big thing to bands and the fans if you want to make or get an impact or good impression. On the 1997 European tour supporting Korn, Incubus was opening. "We had never played in front of a crowd that big, and the response we got far exceeded any response we've ever gotten. To play in front of a crowd that has no idea who you are, and then you start playing and they understand the energy of it and start freaking out, it's quite an experience," says Boyd.

Incubus' unusual style of music, and high-energy shows, mixed with Boyd's 'smoothly hypnotic voice' make the band easy to love. Incubus is one of those bands who think of original but deep songs and you know what the band is talking about without becoming "maniacally depressive." Incubus' incredible rock songs are bursting with melody and have an extra special something that separates them from the rest of the rock world. I think that when Boyd sings he paints pictures of what he's talking about and you can completely understand what he's saying and with some bands that's difficult. Their songs paint images of a past life, before the musical scene was ever a big issue, and tells of the trials and tribulations that many humans go through during their development. I feel that, because of this connection everyone the songs the band sing reach people on a far more personal level than many others who simply sing for the point of singing and making music. There is more to music that sound, and Incubus prove this with their talent and ever changing style.

Boyd is a great writer and singer and he makes sense of feeling. All of his lyrics, quote "carry an underlying positive theme through stories of space, relationships and socio-political issues. His beliefs are expressed strongly in his songs." It is so easy to feel close to him as his songs relate, not so distantly, from the life I've lived. In his songs, you could look at the title of the song and think that you knew what the song would be about, but besides the obvious there is a deeper meaning that you would need to focus on. Incubus admits they come up with 'strange stuff' but that's what makes them unique.

Home is something that bands don't see a lot of when they are on tour. To make the album 'Morning View', the band bought a Malibu mansion and stayed there for 6 months to finish the album. After that they went on tour. Boyd says, "I really enjoy being at home because I enjoy my privacy. I enjoy sitting and listening to the sound of nothing. And, I really enjoy touring too, but at the pace we go; sometimes it's almost intolerable. For the past year, when we get on stage, it's the closest thing to home we all have right now. And it's the best part of the day, every day."

Boyd believes that 'everything in his life has been important and essential' Boyd has no regrets in his life, and "everything has been an experience and led me to now." Boyd says his fear is "what people including myself, are capable of, but it also excites me. I'm afraid of the atrocities that we are capable of and the things that can happen if everyone makes decisions based on fear, which we have been doing for a long long time now. So, I am very excited and interested, but also ironically afraid of what would happen if we didn't make decisions based on fear. It would be very interesting to see what would happen if people lived through a different philosophy." He adds that the greatest thing that he has learned from being in Incubus is "to let be what will be." Also, "...being in this band has taught me to accept each situation and each occurrence in my life as the right occurrence. Whatever happens, as chaotic as it sounds, is the right thing and is perfect and was supposed to happen for me in order for me to grow as an individual. It's sort of a spiritual philosophy, that being in this band is helping me understand."

Boyd is a truly positive person who has the ability to lift peoples' spirits to no end with the beauty and quality of the songs he writes. And with the musical talents of Eizenger and the rest of the band there is no end to the mood they can create and the emotions they can let loose. The uniqueness of Boyd makes him just that little bit more special, and his beauty transponds the limitations that people think are all there is. His beauty is manifested in his music, a talent that so few artists possess but so many want. I wish I had the ability to write such beautiful and inspiring music, for that is what Incubus truly stand for. Inspiration for people to write, not just music, but true music that plays for the heart and soul of anyone that listens to it. The ability to write such music is in short supply, but Incubus created a revolution with their appearance, one that may well have changed the way so many people think about music and inspired them on to greater things, as I know it has done for me. Everything I learned about, and from him is interesting, intriguing and rewarding and so much of it I will never forget. Brandon Boyd, we love you!

Thanks to Michelle Puckett for much information and quotes.

77 comments sorted by best / new / date

    sounds like you got a crush on him....."brandon boyd is sooooo dreamy....."
    It is called Incubus' Brandon Boyd. The only reason I put the band in there was because that's how so many people know him. The article is about him, and his music with parts about the band. Nothing more.
    I saw it, funny indeed =) but the dramatization on Brandon's accident was great too. And if the writer of the column would have watched it she would have known that Brandon has a girlfriend.. Anyway, I've got his book (white fluffy clouds) and it's great! (well the photografphic art wasn't all that impressive, but his drawings were!) That guy realy got skills.. (p.s. forgive me for probably making a lot of mistakes but I'm dutch so please accept my excuse )
    Tom Martin
    Stupid quote things... bah. One about Mike would be cool, he is class. Anyone seen the short film on the Crow Left Of The Murder DVD starring Mike? That is so funny, and that song is class!
    Hmm..Brandon is quite an amazing singer nice article but i would perfer one about the whole band or Mikey
    Well when doing a bio about the band that's when it becomes more a insult to just concentrate on the singer the band as a whole
    All I'm going to say is I saw them Friday, Sept. 17th, and it was the most amazing show I've ever seen. They did a drumline like you wouldn't believe. OH MY GOD! I was in Heaven for 3 hours. Yes, Brandon Boyd is hot, but it's his voice and passion and performance that really gets me. That group puts on one hell of a show.
    Im confused i thought this was a article about incubus the band not Brandon Boyd the lead singer of incubus. I think it was just a little bias and it's sort of a insult to a band just to concentrate more on the vocalist then on the band as a whole.
    This is a guitar site, not a "gay support" site. Brandon is one of the most tallented song writers on the rock scene today. But, good God man... You got issues. -Ryan-
    Incubus kick ass. Saw them on the 12th, and they were amazing. And all the girls screamed when he took his top off, which proves your point.
    I'm italian and i can't translate all the text so i know that incubus is THE BEST !!!! I went to the concert in Italy at Alcatraz of Milan....they are great! from the guitarrist Mike Einziger to the DJ killmore... Incubus are the only band that mix togheter metal, rock, funk,elettronic effets!!!! GOOd?
    i love brandon too. and i would really turn into a succubus for him. hehe.just kidding. i find him sexy but of course, i learned to love his music first
    Were you in love with the guy when you wrote this? sike, just kidding. but I felt like I was reading from seventeen magazine or something for a while there. just kidding again sorry, haha
    agreed! i saw them earlier this year, and they were awesome. I think this article would be better suited to a teen magazine! stop focussing on Brandon (yes he is hot and talented...) write something about mike or hose!
    You have to love Incubus. Each band member (even the newly/newer Ben Kenney) makes the band as a whole amazing. But since this is about Brandon...he is one of the few singers left in the industry that can actually sing
    Incubus is one of the best bands ever put together! They have been my favorite band since I heard southern girl! It was the first Incubus song I ever heard! To be honest they have saved my life! Their songs move me, and Brandon Boyd's voice just captivates me! So thank you incubus for everything you have done! God Bless
    Incubus is my favorite band hands down. Brandon Boyd is a great song and lyrics writer, Mike Einziger is a very creative and original guitarist, Ben Kenney has really melodic bass riffs, Jose is a fast and precise drummer, Kilmore sets the mood of the songs. Incubus forever!
    incubus is one of a kind and for me is the best band ever.... agree??? the very first song i heard from incubus is are you in and from that moment i started listening to them... incubus and brandon is the reason why i started out a band... i really love singing.... brandon boyd and incubus rocks... i hate it when some people say that brandon is gay... for me he's not gay... he's a great singer and a great writter... thats what he is... he writes deep and meaningfull songs... heavy and meaningfull song... some people even said that incubus saved their lives... isnt that weird... maybe its true because brandon is a great singer and a good writter... unique and the best thats all i can say... anyone agree???
    Incubus are my favourite band and in my opinion the best band in the world they make great music and should continue
    Incubus is definitely my favorite band ever. yeah that would be cool if they did a column on the whole band
    make one for mikey too..... bout his style, how he come up with his chords and other stuffs bout him.
    Pardon me though...Mike's cool too.I love the article. Another appreciation of Brandon Boyd's existence. But ahallicks, please do take time to edit your mistakes in the article, think of will definitely bother Mr. Boyd...
    ya.. his book was o.k. couldve been better... Brandon's mother was always kind to him and thats why he is where he is 2day... the lyrics always mean something to me... if ur a big incubus fan like me, check out the album "Maximum Incubus"... its a bio of incubus... u can get it on Amazon
    Incubus for me are possibily the best band ever and Brandon Boyd is a truly inspirational and emotionally jerking song writer and performer.
    I like Incubus and Brandon Boyd, but this artichle sucks.
    Brandon Boys is an inspiration~~~~ hell! he writes the best lyrics and his voice*melts* is dreamy meet me in outer space~~~..
    Tom Martin
    Incubus were brilliant the other night, apart from I nearly went blind cuz my eyes went into spasms. Strangly that happened just after he took his shirt off, damn he is attractive....
    I second that, he is v. talented but not worth obsessing about. Get a boyfriend eh?
    GOING TO SEE INCUBUS FRIDAY!! Article had some interesting point's about brandon and stuff he has done and said. Also gave some decent facts about the band. Nice article. Rock on incubus!
    incubus are probably one of the top three best bands that are famous, but that seemed kinda obssesive how do you spell obssesive
    yeah incubus is awesome. i hate when people compare them to rap metal groups like limp bizkit. there's no accurate label that you could slap on incubus. all the guys are really great musicians. mike has such an original style of guitar playing. and i think brandon's girlfriend's name is joe, since he writes all this sappy stuff about her in the thank yous.
    well... despite the article being inaccurate, biased, and obsessive... i liked it hell ima massive incubus fan anyway so i like everythin dealin with them
    Tom Martin
    I love incubus, I'm going to see them tomorrow And you've got a couple of things wrong in the article: Firstly, Incubus does not derive from the word 'incubate'. Incubus is actually a word, it means: "An evil spirit supposed to descend upon and have sexual intercourse with women as they sleep" or something like that. Secondly, Incubus's first release was an EP called 'The Truth About Root Beer', it was a record, with two tracks on (I'm pretty sure about this) Thirdly, hate to tell you, but mr Boyd does have a girlfriend.
    I read he had a girlfriend for like 8 years but she cheated on him while he was in Europe and he dumped her, around when they were making Morning View. Read that in Rolling Stone. But then again, that's an old issue and Morning View is an old album. So...yeah. Sorta. Anyway, I enjoyed this. Love Incubus.
    incubus definately kicks ass, i thought it was a good article, yes biased, but owell