Brandon Boyd

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Brandon Boyd
Boyd performing with Incubus in 2012
Boyd performing with Incubus in 2012
Background information
Birth nameBrandon Charles Boyd
Also known asThe Invisible Floating Torso Man (Make Yourself)
Happy Knappy (Fungus Amongus)
Brandon of the Jungle (Enjoy Incubus)
Cornelius (S.C.I.E.N.C.E.)
Born (1976-02-15) February 15, 1976 (age 45)
Van Nuys, California, U.S.
GenresAlternative rock, indie rock, alternative metal,[1] funk rock, nu metal, funk metal[2]
Occupation(s)Musician, artist
InstrumentsVocals, guitar, percussion, bass
Years active1990–present
LabelsEpic, Immortal, Sony, Island
Associated actsIncubus, Sons of the Sea

Brandon Charles Boyd (born February 15, 1976) is an American singer, songwriter, musician, author, and visual artist. He is best known as the lead vocalist of the American rock band Incubus.

Early life[edit]

Boyd graduated from Calabasas High School in 1994 and attended Moorpark College for two years before committing to Incubus. Brandon grew up in Calabasas, California with Ricky Taylor who inspired him to write music. His parents, Priscilla "Dolly" Wiseman and Charles Boyd, both of whom had experience in entertainment, had nurtured his artistic side since he was a child.[3] Other notable family members include his younger brother, Jason Boyd, the former lead singer of the band Audiovent, his cousin Berto Boyd, an accomplished Flamenco guitarist and composer, as well as cousin Sam Boyd, a professional motocross rider. In an interview, Brandon explained that he had "yet to stumble across his best work" because he lacked the ability to read music.[4]


Boyd designed concert fliers that advertised Incubus' early performances.[5] He occasionally plays guitar during live performances and is known for bringing unusual instruments into his songs, such as the didgeridoo and djembe.[6][7]

Boyd's voice was part of what enticed Sony's Epic/Immortal Records, along with the self-released album Fungus Amongus. The band was signed in 1996. Incubus' first two releases on the label, Enjoy Incubus and S.C.I.E.N.C.E. went largely unnoticed in the mainstream, but subsequent releases Make Yourself and Morning View were commercial successes. Boyd attracted a large number of female fans. In a 2001 interview, Spin wrote "Considering his androgynous beauty and sweet demeanor, plus Incubus' kid-tested/mother-approved guitar rock, it's no surprise he's MTV's newest weapon of mass heartbreak. Girls scream for him to take his shirt off at Incubus shows (he usually obliges), and Teen People recently voted him one of 'The Hottest Guys in Music.' His sensitive-guy appeal sets him apart from today's testosterone-drunk rock".[8] The band's 2004 release A Crow Left of the Murder... has continued their success, nominating the band for Best Hard Rock Performance in the 2005 Grammy Awards. On November 28, 2006, the band released Light Grenades. On June 16, 2009, Incubus released a greatest hits album titled Monuments and Melodies.

In 2011 Incubus finished their seventh studio album If Not Now, When?, released on July 12, 2011, followed by a tour. It was their final release under Sony.

Boyd performing with Incubus in 2007.

On December 13, 2014 they performed their upcoming single entitled "Trust Fall" at KROQ. They announced the release of two EP's in 2015 with the first, Trust Fall, released on March 24, 2015 through Island Records.[9] On February 5, 2015, the single "Absolution Calling" was released. Two years later, in February 2017, Boyd and Incubus teamed with Skrillex on a collaboration that was released under the title "8" in April, 2017.[10]

Literature and fine art[edit]

Although Boyd had been drawing his entire life, between 2003 and 2008 he focused more seriously on creating fine art, specifically painting. During this time he participated in many different group and solo art shows, using his artwork as a means for environmental activism. September 8, 2008 marked the opening of his first solo show, "Ectoplasm," at Mr. Musichead Gallery in Los Angeles, California.[11]

In March 2020, Boyd had planned to debut a new large-scale solo exhibit, "Impossible Knots," at the Samuel Lynne Galleries in Dallas, Texas. However, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the in-person exhibit had to be postponed. On April 18, 2020, his work debuted online via a virtual exhibition preview on Instagram LIVE.[12] This online debut will be followed by the in-person exhibition in Fall 2020 or Spring 2021.[13][14]

Boyd released a card-matching game called "Two Doors/Deux Portes," based on a series of his watercolor paintings.[15]

Boyd has written and curated three books, each of which comprise his personal illustrations, photography, song lyrics, and additional thoughts and writings. His books are White Fluffy Clouds (2003), From the Murks of the Sultry Abyss (2007), and So the Echo (2013),[16] all published under his book imprint, Endophasia Publications. So the Echo "visually weaves" the years that Boyd spent honing his craft and his talents, both in music and art.[17]

Charity and activism[edit]

In the spring of 2011, Boyd made a large mural at the Hurley Space Gallery in order to raise awareness about single use plastics and their harmful effects on the world's oceans.[18]

Boyd is involved with many organizations and charitable causes and in 2003, along with his Incubus bandmates, he founded the 501(c)(3) non-profit The Make Yourself Foundation, which has raised over $1.4 million for various philanthropic causes locally and globally.[19] The organization has awarded grant funding to over 60 nonprofit organizations.[20]

Jesus Christ Superstar Arena Spectacular 2014[edit]

Boyd was selected to play the role of Judas Iscariot for the North American arena tour of Andrew Lloyd Webber's rock opera Jesus Christ Superstar. He was to play the role starting June 9 through August 17. On May 31, the tour was canceled.

Solo career[edit]

On July 6, 2010, Boyd announced that his debut solo album, The Wild Trapeze was released.[21] On June 21, 2010, a music video for Boyd's first single from The Wild Trapeze, entitled "Runaway Train," was released online. A second music video was released for the album, for the song "Last Night a Passenger" in October 2010.

On January 18, 2013 Brandon announced his new band, Sons of the Sea. With Incubus on indefinite hiatus, Sons of the Sea will tour 2013 and 2014. On May 29, 2013 Brandon released a teaser video announcing the name of the album, Sons of the Sea. That same year, he embarked on a book-signing tour of the Northeast to coincide with his latest publication "So The Echo," as well as the release of "Sons of the Sea"'s eponymous record.


Boyd is known for his wide variety of tattoos. On his forearms he carries the widely known mantra Om Mani Padme Hum, referring to the qualities of generosity, ethics, patience, diligence, renunciation and wisdom. Underneath that is a koi fish in red ink by Lars Johansson. On the inside of his right arm he has several tattoos, one once again incorporating the Tibetan mantra. Following the release of their album "A Crow Left of the Murder," he got an elaborate back tattoo featuring the common image of the All Seeing-Eye embedded in a pyramid.[22] He also has a tattoo of the Eye of Horus on his right ankle. Other tattoos include his parents' names (Priscilla and Charles) on his forearms, an owl on his back, one teardrop on his index finger on both hands, and a picture inspired by Aubrey Beardsley's famous art, "The Peacock Skirt", on his left arm.


With Incubus
With Sons of the Sea
Guest Appearances


  1. ^ "Fuse".
  2. ^ Ryan, Patrick (2013-06-20). "Video premiere: Brandon Boyd's 'Space & Time'". Retrieved 2014-08-12.
  3. ^ "Charles Boyd". Internet Movie Database. Retrieved 2014-08-12.
  4. ^ "A Pivotal Point: Interview with Brandon Boyd of Incubus". SF Critic. 2009-09-28. Retrieved 2014-08-12.
  5. ^ "Incubus Band History". Archived from the original on 2012-07-20. Retrieved 2014-08-12.
  6. ^ "Brandon Boyd". Jango Radio. Retrieved 2016-02-14.
  7. ^ "13 Bands Who've Made Use of Unusual Instruments". Wasted Talent Ltd. Retrieved 2020-08-02.
  8. ^ SPIN Nov 2001, Vol. 17, No. 11
  9. ^ "Incubus premieres new single "Absolution Calling" — listen". February 5, 2015. Retrieved February 10, 2015.
  10. ^ SKRILLEX [@Skrillex] (27 February 2017). "Been so rad working with @IncubusBand 🙌" (Tweet) – via Twitter.
  11. ^ Broadley, Erin (2008-09-18). "Ectoplasm: In the Art Studio with Incubus' Brandon Boyd". LA Weekly. Retrieved 2020-06-15.
  12. ^ "Brandon Boyd videos". Samuel Lynne Galleries. Squarespace. Retrieved 2020-06-15.
  13. ^ "About Brandon Boyd". Brandon Boyd. Retrieved 2020-06-15.
  14. ^ "Impossible Knots by Brandon Boyd". Samuel Lynne Galleries. Squarespace. Retrieved 2020-06-15.
  15. ^ Paul, Arielle (2019-04-06). "Incubus frontman Brandon Boyd finds peace in his yurt". LA Times. Retrieved 2020-08-02.
  16. ^ "So The Echo - About". Archived from the original on 2016-03-13. Retrieved 2014-08-12.
  17. ^ "Book Review: So the Echo x Brandon Boyd". The Manifold. The Manifold Magazine. 2013. Retrieved 2020-06-15.
  18. ^ "Art Duet » Brandon Boyd Bio". Retrieved 2016-02-14.[permanent dead link]
  19. ^ "Art Duet » Brandon Boyd Bio". Retrieved 2016-02-14.[permanent dead link]
  20. ^ "Join Incubus at Empire Music Festival & Explore the Ancient Mayan Ruins". The Make Yourself Foundation. Archived from the original on 2016-03-09. Retrieved 2016-02-14.
  21. ^ "Brandon Boyd: The Wild Trapeze". CraveOnline. 2010-07-12. Archived from the original on 2010-09-27. Retrieved 2014-08-12.
  22. ^ "ImageShack - Best place for all of your image hosting and image sharing needs". Retrieved 2014-08-12.

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