Interview with Koji Kondo

In a recent interview released in The Legend of Zelda: Super Best Collection, a collection of Zelda sheet music, Koji Kondo talks about various things concerning his musical experiences. For those who don’t know, Koji Kondo is the mastermind behind the Zelda soundtracks along with several other Nintendo franchises. In the interview, Koji Kondo briefly discusses his early musical endeavors along with the inspirations that allow him to write his music. Here are some tidbits I found interesting.

-So, what got you into the game industry?

Kondo: I’d been a game fan since long ago, playing business purpose games and LCD games. In university, cafe tables with game screens embedded in them began to appear and I got into Donkey Kong and Mario Brothers.

-The songs you’re making aren’t music for the sake of music, they’re based on the idea of making music for games, isn’t that right? How does one compose music like that?

Kondo: I set the sequencer to record and play my heart out. Then I listen to it afterwards, and I pick out the parts that I think sound good. Even though there aren’t many. *laughs* I scribble out some notation, but it’s so sloppy only I can read it.

-Maybe it was your destiny to make game music! Please give us a message for the fans who are striving to make game music.

Kondo: Well, I can’t say anything really inspiring… but you have to make game music using a variety of genres, so don’t just go according to your tastes, listen to music from around the world. And you don’t absorb it just by listening, you also have to try playing yourself. Then, score it if you can. When you’ve absorbed that music inside of you and you’re composing it will become your own and spill out onto the paper, I think.

The full interview can be found here. What parts did you all find interesting? What’s your opinion on the interview overall? Let us know by leaving a comment!

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