The charismatic and awarded musician died on 28th of March 2023, after a long battle with cancer. Ruyichi Sakamoto was a member of the Yellow Magic Orchestra. His death follows the death of another important member of the band, Yukihiro Takahashi.
Ruyichi Sakamoto was born on 17th of January 1952 in Tokyo. He was a composer, pianist and music producer. He is recognised for his achievements as a solo musician, but also as a member of th Yellow Magic Orchestra (YMO). With the members of this band, Sakamoto influenced a series of electronic subgenres, as well as the videogame music industry.
He started his career when he was still in college, during the 1970s, as musician and producer. He met great success when he co-founded YMO in 1978 and his solo album, Thusand Knives became an immidiate hit the same year. In 1980, he published his second album, B-2 Unit, which included the song “Riot in Lagos”. The song is very important for the development of Hip-Hop music and Electro.
He continued to make solo music and he also had a lot of collaborations with other famous artists. Some of them are, Fennesz, David Sylvian and Carsten Nikolai. Sakamoto also composed music for the opening ceremony of 1992 Olympic Games in Barcelona. His composition from 1999, Energy Flow was number one single in Oricon Chart in history for Japan.
As a cinema and soundtrack composer, Ruyichi Sakamoto has an Oscar, a BAFTA, one Grammy Award and 2 Golden Globes. His debut was on Merry Christmas, Mr. Lawrence (1983) was also his first as an actor. His most successful work however, is his soundtrack for the movie The Last Emperor in 1987, from where he continued to be productive with, Tea in Sahara (1990), Little Buddha (1993) and The Return (2015).