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Michio Kurihara


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Tokyo, Japan (1983 – present)

The premier guitarist of the Japanese underground movement, Michio Kurihara (栗原道夫) was born November 23, 1961, in Tokyo. Though raised on a diet of classical music, as a teen his interests turned to rock & roll, and he began playing guitar at age 14. Kurihara made his recorded debut in 1983 with ONNA, a group led by cartoonist Keizo Miyanishi, followed a year later by a tenure with YBO². In mid-1986, he was invited to join the You Ishihara-led White Heaven, considered in some quarters the most significant band of Japan’s psychedelic revival. Here Kurihara’s guitar playing blossomed, its ferocious, feedback-rich lyricism often evoking Quicksilver Messenger Service’s John Cippolina. He remained with White Heaven until 1991, going on to play with Henkyo Gakudan and others.

In 1994 Kurihara first collaborated with Ghost, whose ranks he officially joined three years later. As a result of the band’s U.S. distribution deal with Drag City, many Western listeners discovered Japan’s blooming psychedelic culture for the first time - in particular, duo Damon & Naomi championed their admiration for Ghost in interviews, later inviting the group to open their U.S. tour and in 2000 releasing the LP collaboration Damon & Naomi With Ghost. Kurihara played guitar on the duo’s subsequent world tour, and remained a frequent collaborator in the years to follow. In late 1999, he also joined with White Heaven bandmates You Ishihara and Chiyo Kamekawa in The Stars, and in 2005 finally issued his debut solo album, Sunset Notes.


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  • Obay_the_Zombie

    Sufi tunes from Syria :)

    26 Oct 2014 Reply
  • cube_teh_reaL

    amazingly talented

    23 Oct 2014 Reply
  • 16N0R4N7


    9 Oct 2014 Reply
  • azukitan

    ==> 栗原道夫

    6 Sep 2013 Reply
  • andi___

    very good

    2 Feb 2013 Reply
  • Andaer

    Proud owner of Sunset Notes CD since December 24th, 2012.

    11 Jan 2013 Reply
  • iconan

    The guitar of Kurihara is something else; he knows exactly what to do to lift each song into another dimension. The melodies and sounds he produces are like a mantra for Krishna on this earth and his roots in the white sky is well worth listen. -.-.-.-. om hari om ..... ॐะ

    4 Jan 2013 Reply
  • musicishorrible

    I tag this as japanese, seen live and good musicians

    29 Sep 2012 Reply
  • DecibelQueen

    PS: 'Japanese' is not a freaking genre, stop tagging bands as that.

    25 Jun 2012 Reply
  • DecibelQueen

    He is a god... Just like Wata!

    22 Jun 2012 Reply
  • iconan

    Michio Kurihara - Sunset Notes - Michio Kurihara finally released his debut solo record in 2007. SUNSET NOTES is not only a modern psych guitar, but also a mesmerizing reflection on nature's dazzling daily . - -.-.-.-. om hari om ..... ॐ

    11 Jun 2012 Reply
  • Saturnlane

    amazing fucking guitarist

    29 Mar 2012 Reply
  • anarxoaplytos

    finally I am religious lol

    10 Mar 2012 Reply
  • Funeral_Opolis

    Michio is the man.

    24 Oct 2011 Reply
  • MaxPower420

    do do do DO DO DO do do dododo do do

    6 Oct 2011 Reply
  • Uglycannibal

    Saw this guy play with Boris. I can honestly say, that concert was one of the best experiences of my life. He's phenomenal live, and if I ever were to have a chance to see Sunset Notes live, I'd drop everything else in a heartbeat. The amount of beauty he brings out of his instrument is absolutely disarming, and it's a damn shame Sunset Notes isn't regarded as one of the all-time great albums.

    24 Sep 2011 Reply
  • Iheartokiohotel

    Proud owner of Sunset Notes CD since September 9th, 2011.

    12 Sep 2011 Reply
  • Iheartokiohotel

    track 2 of sunset notes never fails to put a smile on my face :)

    26 Aug 2011 Reply
  • RiotSugar

    I'd love to see Michio play through Sunset Notes live. I could sit and watch the man play for days.

    26 Jul 2011 Reply
  • Chi-hiita

    Sunset Notes is damn great! We want more Michio!

    20 Jul 2011 Reply
  • All 73 shouts

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