Famous Japanese Musicians

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 1 
Suzuka Nakamoto
(Metal Singer Best Known as a Member of the Kawaii Metal Band 'Babymetal')
Suzuka Nakamoto
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Birthdate: December 20, 1997
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Hiroshima, Japan

Japanese kawaii metal sensation Suzuka Nakamoto is best known for being part of the band Babymetal. Also known as Su-metal, she entered the world of showbiz with Jewel Drop commercials and later won a kids’ audition. She has also been part of the idol girl group Sakura Gakuin.

 2 
Rina Sawayama
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Birthdate: August 16, 1990
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Niigata, Japan
Rina Sawayama is known for her unusual blends of pop with R&B, club music, nu-metal, and other genres. Born in Japan, the singer/model moved with her family to the UK at age 5. She is also a Cambridge graduate and a queer icon who identifies as pansexual and bisexual. 
 3 
James Iha
(Musician)
James Iha
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Birthdate: March 26, 1968
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Chicago, Illinois, USA
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 4 
Miyavi
(Singer, Guitarist)
Miyavi
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Birthdate: September 14, 1981
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Konohana-ku, Osaka, Osaka Prefecture

Miyavi is a Japanese singer-songwriter, guitarist, actor, and record producer. Apart from being an entertainer, Miyavi is also a volunteer at UNHCR; since 2013, he has been visiting several refugee camps across the world. He was made an official UNHCR Goodwill Ambassador in November 2017.   

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 5 
Ayumi Hamasaki
(Singer, Seiyū, Songwriter, Model, Actor, Singer-songwriter, Composer, Lyricist, Poet, Record producer)
Ayumi Hamasaki
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Birthdate: October 2, 1978
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Fukuoka

Japanese pop icon Ayumi Hamasaki had started a TV career after moving to Tokyo at 14. She later gained fame with her dance hits and ballads. Also known for her dramatic costumes and videos, The Empress of J-pop has been rendered totally deaf in one ear, owing to a ear infection.

 6 
Hiroyuki Sawano
(Composer)
Hiroyuki Sawano
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Birthdate: September 12, 1980
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Tokyo, Japan

A multi-talented personality, Hiroyuki Sawano is a Japanese composer, arranger, musician, and lyricist. He is best known for his work on anime TV series, films, and TV dramas. He has composed music for films and series like Attack on Titan and Blue Exorcist. He started a new vocal project under the name ''SawanoHiroyuki[nZk] in 2014 and has released many albums.

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 7 
Ryuichi Sakamoto
(Japanese Composer and Pianist Who Influenced and Pioneered a Number of 'Electronic Music' Genres)
Ryuichi Sakamoto
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Birthdate: January 17, 1952
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Tokyo, Japan

Apart from being a keyboardist and songwriter for the Yellow Magic Orchestra, Japanese pianist and composer Ryuichi Sakamoto has also been a solo artist and composed tracks for films such as The Last Emperor and The Revenant. He now has a Grammy and an Academy Award in his kitty.

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 8 
Nobuo Uematsu
(Composer)
Nobuo Uematsu
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Birthdate: March 21, 1959
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Kochi, Kochi, Japan

Nobuo Uematsu is a Japanese composer and musician. A self-taught musician, Uematsu is best known for his work in the Final Fantasy video game series. A prolific composer for several video games, Nobuo Uematsu is sometimes called the Beethoven of video game music. In 2006, he founded his own record label, Dog Ear Records.

 9 
Koji Kondo
(Composer)
Koji Kondo
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Birthdate: August 13, 1961
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Nagoya, Aichi, Japan
 10 
Tomohisa Yamashita
(Singer, Actor)
Tomohisa Yamashita
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Birthdate: April 9, 1985
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Funabashi, Chiba

Tomohisa Yamashita is a Japanese singer, TV host, and actor. After joining talent agency Johnny & Associates at the age of 11, Yamashita has been active on TV ever since. He is best known for his portrayal of Kusano Akira in the 2005 TV drama Nobuta Wo Produce. Over the years, he has won several Nikkan Sports Drama Grand Prix awards.

 11 
Gackt
(Japanese musician)
Gackt
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Birthdate: July 4, 1973
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Okinawa Prefecture
 12 
Joe Hisaishi
(Japanese Composer and Musical Director Known to Explore and Incorporate Different Genres in His Scores)
Joe Hisaishi
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Birthdate: December 6, 1950
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Nakano, Nagano, Japan

Joe Hisaishi is a Japanese composer and musical director who has composed over 100 film scores and solo albums. Active since the 1970s, he has explored and incorporated numerous genres in his work. He often collaborates with animator Hayao Miyazaki and has composed music for most of his films. He has received a Medal of Honour with a purple ribbon.  

 13 
Hide
(Former Lead Guitarist of the Rock Band 'X Japan')
Hide
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Birthdate: December 13, 1964
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Yokosuka, Kanagawa, Japan
Died: April 2, 1998

Hideto Takarai, better known as Hyde, soared to fame as the lead singer of the Japanese rock band L'Arc-en-Ciel. He has also performed as part of the duo Vamps and released solo tracks such as Evergreen and Shallow Sleep. He has sold over 40 million records as part of L'Arc-en-Ciel.

 14 
Mitsuko Uchida
(Classical pianist, conductor)
Mitsuko Uchida
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Birthdate: December 20, 1948
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Atami, Shizuoka, Japan
 15 
Kyu Sakamoto
(Singer)
Kyu Sakamoto
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Birthdate: December 10, 1941
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Kawasaki Ward, Kawasaki, Kanagawa, Japan
Died: August 12, 1985

With his Billboard number one track Sukiyaki, Kyu Sakamoto became the first to score a pop number one with a song entirely sung in Japanese. Born to a restaurateur, he had started his career singing in jazz clubs. He died in a 1985 plane crash that killed over 500 people.

 16 
Hikaru Utada
(Singer-Songwriter and One of the Best-Selling Musical Artists in Japan)
Hikaru Utada
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Birthdate: January 19, 1983
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Manhattan, New York, United States

Hikaru Utada is a Japanese-American singer, producer, and songwriter. She achieved popularity after releasing her first Japanese-language studio album First Love, which became Japan's best-selling album of all time. Utada was regarded as the most influential artist of the 2000s in Japan. She is also one of the most decorated Japanese artists of her generation.

 17 
Yuki Kajiura
(Musician)
Yuki Kajiura
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Birthdate: August 6, 1965
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Tokyo, Japan
 18 
Yoko Kanno
(Composer, Singer)
Yoko Kanno
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Birthdate: March 18, 1963
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Sendai, Miyagi, Japan
 19 
Naoki Urasawa
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Birthdate: January 2, 1960
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Fuchu, Tokyo, Japan

Award-winning Japanese manga artist Naoki Urasawa is best known for his thriller Monster and the sci-fi 20th Century Boys. Fans love his intricate and psychologically complicated plots. He also teaches at the Nagoya Zokei University and is a skilled rock musician who once performed as Bob Lennon.

 20 
Yui
(Singer- Songwriter)
Yui
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Birthdate: March 26, 1987
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Koga, Japan
 21 
Yoshiki
(Japanese musician)
Yoshiki
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Birthdate: November 20, 1965
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Tateyama, Chiba Prefecture
 22 
Takahiro Moriuchi
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Birthdate: April 17, 1988
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Tokyo, Japan

Takahiro Moriuchi, better known to fans a Taka, soared to fame as the lead singer of the Japanese rock band One Ok Rock. He was previously part of the boy band News. The eldest son of popular singers Shinichi and Masako Mori, he now owns a lavish home in Hollywood Hills.

 23 
Alice Sara Ott
(Classical pianist)
Alice Sara Ott
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Birthdate: August 1, 1988
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Munich, Germany

German-Japanese classical pianist Alice Sara Ott began learning the piano at age 5. At 13, she was the youngest finalist of the Hamamatsu International Piano Academy Competition ever. She has also designed bags and app stickers. In 2019, she announced on Instagram that she had been suffering from multiple sclerosis.

 24 
Kitaro
(Musician, composer, record producer, arranger)
Kitaro
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Birthdate: February 4, 1953
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Toyohashi
 25 
Yuma Asami
(Actor, Adult Film Star, Model, Singer, AV idol, Musician, Tarento)
Yuma Asami
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Birthdate: March 24, 1987
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Takasaki

One of Japan’s most well-known adult stars, Yuma Asami had begun her career at age 18. She mostly worked with studios that specialized in soft porn. The Grand Prix award-winning actor was later diagnosed with ovarian cancer. Post-recovery, she ditched the adult industry and began working as a singer.

 26 
Isao Tomita
(Musical composer)
Isao Tomita
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Birthdate: April 22, 1932
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Toyotama District, Tokyo
Died: May 5, 2016
 27 
Kazunari Ninomiya
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Birthdate: June 17, 1983
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Katsushika, Tokyo

Kazunari Ninomiya is a Japanese singer, radio host, songwriter, voice actor, and actor. He is best known for his association with the popular boy band, Arashi. Over the course of his successful career, Kazunari Ninomiya has won several prestigious awards, such as Nikkan Sports Drama Grand Prix, Japan Broadcast Film Arts Award, Hochi Film Award, Hashida Award, and Galaxy Award.

 28 
Damo Suzuki
(Musician)
Damo Suzuki
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Birthdate: January 16, 1950
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Japan

Damo Suzuki is a Japanese musician best known for his association with the German experimental rock band Can where he was the lead singer from 1970 to 1973. Suzuki, who has been living in Germany since the 1970s, is an exponent of a genre of experimental rock called Krautrock, which was developed in the 1960s and 1970s in West Germany.

 29 
Meiko Kaji
(Actor, Singer, Musician)
Meiko Kaji
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Birthdate: March 24, 1947
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Chiyoda-ku

Meiko Kaji is a Japanese singer and actress best known for playing outlaw characters in movies like Stray Cat Rock, Female Prisoner 701: Scorpion, and Wandering Ginza Butterfly. She has appeared in more than 100 television series and films so far. Meiko Kaji was honored with the prestigious Kinuyo Tanaka Award at the 75th Mainichi Film Awards.

 30 
Misia
(Singer, Singer-songwriter, Lyricist, Composer, Record producer)
Misia
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Birthdate: July 7, 1978
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Ōmura

Misia is a Japanese record producer, singer, and songwriter. She is best known for her album Mother Father Brother Sister which went on to become the seventh best-selling debut album of all time in Japan. Widely regarded as Japan's first R&B superstar, Misia is also credited with releasing one of the best-selling Japanese singles of all time, Everything.

 31 
Donna Burke
(Singer, Seiyū)
Donna Burke
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Birthdate: December 12, 1964
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Perth

Donna Burke is an Australian singer, narrator, voice actress, and businesswoman. Apart from contributing to anime songs and TV commercials as a voice actress, Burke also contributes as a lyricist. In 2007, a documentary named Climate in Crisis which was narrated by her won the silver medal at the New York Television Festival. 

 32 
Kami
(Musician)
Kami
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Birthdate: February 1, 1972
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Ibaraki, Japan
Died: June 21, 1999
 33 
Shunji Iwai
(Screenwriter, Film director, Film editor, Film producer, Composer, Lyricist)
Shunji Iwai
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Birthdate: January 24, 1963
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Sendai
 34 
Midori
(Violinist)
Midori
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Birthdate: October 25, 1971
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Hirakata, Osaka, Japan
 35 
Mai Kuraki
(Singer, Composer, Lyricist, Songwriter, Record producer)
Mai Kuraki
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Birthdate: October 28, 1982
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Funabashi

Mai Kuraki is a Japanese R&B and pop singer-songwriter best known for her debut album Delicious Way, which is the ninth best-selling Japanese album of all-time. Kuraki is the only female singer to release singles that have been successively debuting in the Top 10 since 1999. 

 36 
Akira Ifukube
(Composer)
Akira Ifukube
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Birthdate: May 31, 1914
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Kushiro, Japan
Died: February 8, 2006
 37 
Akiko Shikata
(Singer-songwriter)
Akiko Shikata
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Birthdate: January 7, 0000
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Tokyo, Japan
 38 
Toru Takemitsu
(Composer)
Toru Takemitsu
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Birthdate: October 8, 1930
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Tokyo, Japan
Died: February 20, 1996
 39 
Kavka Shishido
(Drummer, Actress)
Kavka Shishido
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Birthdate: June 23, 1985
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Mexico City, Mexico
 40 
Kanon Wakeshima
(Musician)
Kanon Wakeshima
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Birthdate: June 28, 1988
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Tokyo, Japan
 41 
Yoshiki Fukuyama
(Singer, Musician)
Yoshiki Fukuyama
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Birthdate: September 14, 1963
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Tokyo, Japan
 42 
Takuya Kuroda
(Trumpeter)
Takuya Kuroda
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Birthdate: February 21, 1980
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Ashiya, Hyogo, Japan
 43 
Kimiko Douglass-Ishizaka
(Composer, Pianist)
Kimiko Douglass-Ishizaka
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Birthdate: December 4, 1976
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Bonn, Germany

Kimiko Douglass-Ishizaka is a German Japanese pianist, composer, and former powerlifter and Olympic weightlifter. She achieved popularity in 1998 when she won a national music competition known as Deutscher Musikwettbewerb, along with her brothers Danjulo and Kiyondo Ishizaka. As a Olympic weightlifter, Kimiko competed at the 2008 German championships where she won three medals.   

 44 
Shinichi Suzuki
(Musician)
Shinichi Suzuki
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Birthdate: October 17, 1898
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Nagoya, Aichi, Japan
Died: January 26, 1998
 45 
Toshiro Mayuzumi
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Birthdate: February 20, 1929
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Yokohama, Kanagawa, Japan
Died: April 10, 1997
 46 
Kan'ami
(Actor)
Kan'ami
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Birthdate: 1333 AD
Birthplace: Iga, Japan
Died: June 8, 1384
 47 
Gorō Yamaguchi
(Shakuhachi Player)
Gorō Yamaguchi
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Birthdate: February 26, 1933
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Tokyo, Japan
Died: January 3, 1999
 48 
Hiroyuki Iwaki
(Conductor)
Hiroyuki Iwaki
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Birthdate: September 6, 1932
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Tokyo, Japan
Died: June 13, 2006
 49 
Takashi Asahina
(Conductor)
Takashi Asahina
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Birthdate: July 9, 1908
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Tokyo, Japan
Died: December 29, 2001
 50 
Uragami Gyokudō
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Birthdate: 1745 AD
Birthplace: Asakuchi, Okayama, Japan
Died: October 10, 1820

Japanese musician, painter, and calligrapher Uragami Gyokudō was an accomplished seven-stringed zither player. He later studied Confucianism and excelled in the Chinese Nan-ga, or Southern school style of painting. His best-known work is Snow Sifted Through Frozen Clouds, which is considered a National Treasure of Japan.