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Nakano, Tokyo (1978 – present)

Ryuichi Sakamoto (坂本龍一, Sakamoto Ryūichi, born January 17, 1952, Nakano, Tokyo, Japan) is a Japanese musician, , and actor.
He attended the Tokyo National University of Fine Arts and Music, where he earned a B.A. in music composition and an M.A. with special emphasis on both electronic and ethnic music. Sakamoto recorded his first solo album in 1978, which included the songs Thousand Knives and The End of Asia.

Around the same time, Sakamoto joined the internationally successful Japanese synth J-Pop trio Yellow Magic Orchestra, along with co-founders Haruomi Hosono and Yukihiro Takahashi. The band charted a British top 20 hit with Firecracker in the late 1970s (and are also remembered for Technopolis, Behind the Mask and Tong Poo), and were a seminal influence on the and movements of the late 1980s and early 1990s. Sakamoto has collaborated with David Sylvian on a number of singles and most of Sylvian’s albums. He has also collaborated with, among others, David Byrne, Fennesz, Towa Tei and Supa DJ Dmitry (from the group Deee-Lite), Alva Noto, Thomas Dolby, Bill Laswell, Nam June Paik, Boredoms, Roddy Frame (frontman for Aztec Camera), Iggy Pop, and Caetano Veloso.

He appeared in the 1983 Nagisa Oshima film Merry Christmas Mr. Lawrence (Senjou no Merii Kurisumasu, aka Furyo) alongside Takeshi Kitano and British rock singer David Bowie. Sakamoto also wrote the film’s musical score, and the theme song Forbidden Colours, sung by Sylvian, became a minor hit.


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