Interview: Jordan Seigel (Composer “Half Brothers”)


We were given the absolute pleasure of speaking to composer and musician Jordan Seigel about his work on the films Half Brothers. Check it out below. Jordan’s responses are italicized for easier viewing.

This movie is a wonderful experience. So full of heart. And you’re music is central to that.

Thank you so much. It’s fun to talk to someone who’s seen the film. I think it’s unique. Because I don’t really think it fits in the comedy or drama category. When the director originally approaches me he said “I’m doing a drama” when I read the script it was really funny for a drama. As the film came together it just sorts of came together. I think it’s 

I really enjoyed that your music didn’t cue the audience into what actions were about to happen, but instead set the mood perfectly. Especially during the montage sequences.

I’m glad you said that. That was a challenge. How much do we want to give away the mystery? I think we agreed to that. How it was attempted and pulled off. We were originally going for Shawshank Redemption with the montages. 

I am, personally a person of Latinx descent, and to see that representation on screen is beautiful. To see them in such a positive light is so refreshing.

It’s been great hearing that! It warms my heart to hear they feel represented. To know what’s going on in this country. That immigrants are being vilified. 

How did you go about crafting the sounds for something like this? What instruments and influences?

We threw everything against the screen. It was very obvious that organic sounds worked best. So it took out any sort of synth pattern. It sort of wiped out a whole pallet, but I love writing organic, acoustic music. I also didn’t want to make a typically “Mexican” pattern. You’re not watching “Coco” I wanted it to feel more universal. It needed some element of that. The nylon string guitars became that. Somewhat the Mandolin as well. It’s more Americana, but it sort of worked for out two brothers. Everything else was based on what sort of fit. We knew the piano worked well, the strings worked well. The brothers vibe was mandolin and upright bass. 

Who are some musicians or composers that you’ve felt have inspired you throughout your career.

I’ve basically been juggling these things since I started my career. I feel like each one contributes to the other. If I have a score job…all my orchestration work helps with that. I’ve been fortunate enough to work with an incredible orchestrator named Tim Davies. I’ve done a lot of composing for people like Marco Beltrami and other. Recently I’ve been doing a lot of studio work. I just put out an album that I’m really proud of. There’s a new “Peanuts” show coming out and I’m very proud of that. 

What is your favorite thing you’ve ever made.

I have to say Half-Brother right? It’s my first feature

I mean if you think that’s the answer.

Cosmic fling. It was only ten minutes long and there’s no dialogue. It features only music and it’s very much in the style I like to write. You said one right, but I guess I should say my album. It was ten years of work and I wanted it to be what people know me for. Like, when you look up my name on Spotify that’s what I want it to be. The album was a way to say this is really what I like to do

How would you describe the sound of the album?

Very accessible Cinematic jazz. I very much didn’t want to make an esoteric jazz album. I wanted it to be something everyone could listen to. I didn’t want you to have to be a movie score fan or jazz fan to enjoy it. It’s very Fiona Apple and John Williams-esque. 

And what’s the album called. Where can they find it.

Beyond Images by Jordan Seigel….yeah it’s everywhere. 

Thank you you so much!

If you’ve enjoyed our interview be sure to check out not just the film Half-Brothers but check out Jordan’s music by listening to his album.

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