Ryuichi Sakamoto

electro, japan, compositeur
Ryuichi Sakamoto

Sakamoto was born in 1952 and began playing piano as a child; he soon became fascinated by Claude Debussy, whom Sakamoto calls “the door to all 20th century music.” In 1970, he began studying composition and ethnomusicology at Tokyo National University, but temporarily abandoned the strictures of classical music for the mysterious possibilities of analog synthesizers, free jazz, and improvisation. His first album, 1976’s Disappointment-Hateruma, follows Sakamoto and percussionist Toshiyuki Tsuchitori as they explore the possibilities of wood blocks, gongs, marimba, and other drums, with a few clarifying touches of a grand piano. “Creating music that doesn’t synchronize is like speaking in a language that doesn’t exist,” Sakamoto said in a 2017 documentary. In other words, he’s been making it up from scratch from the beginning.

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