Ryuichi Sakamoto (坂本龍一)
A world-renowned musician and keyboardist for Yellow Magic Orchestra, Sakamoto’s first solo album was Thousand Knives of Ryuichi Sakamoto, released in 1978. Believing “everything was already done and experimented in the Western music system,” this experimental album allowed Sakamoto to break free of the pre-existing soundscape of music by utilizing the latest in synthesizers. Songs from the album, such as Thousand Knives and End Of Asia, went on to be staples of YMO as well.

Originally, Haroumi Hosono had offered Hiroshi Sato the position of keyboardist in YMO, however Sato declined, prompting him to choose Sakamoto instead, whom he had collaborated with prior on the 1978 album Paraiso.

In 1982 Sakamoto married musician Akiko Yano.

Sakamoto has collaborated with the likes of Iggy Pop, David Sylvian, Thomas Dolby, and Osamu Sato, as well as share the movie screen with David Bowie in Merry Christmas Mr. Lawrence.

Sakamoto’s work in composing films has earned him an Oscar, two Golden Globes, a BAFTA, and a Grammy. Recently, Sakamoto also did compositional work for the television series Black Mirror.

Presently Sakamoto is still releasing experimental compositions, with his most recent album being 2017’s async. Sakamoto is also a major advocate for anti-nuclear policies, environmentalism, and less restrictive copyright laws.