Music

Music Monday: Joe Hisaishi (久石 譲)

Today I want to feature one of my favorite composers. Joe Hisaishi, While most of you may know him from the gorgeous music in Hayao Miyazaki’s films, were you aware that he also composes music for video games and releases CDs?

Although I am a longtime fan of his, I did not discover this other side of Hisaishi until I began playing Ni No Kuni : Wrath of the White Witch and found a dusty old CD entitled Vermeer & Escher in my Shanghai home. The song below is “Sense of the Light,” which was composed in the hopes of evoking the delicate quality of Johannes Vermeer’s paintings. The music is simply sublime, and I find it unique in how it melds together art and music.

Two other notable examples of this are “Vincent” by Don McLean, which directly addresses Vincent van Gogh, and “Mona LIsa” sung by Nat King Cole about Leonardo da Vinci’s famous painting.

Here is the piano version of the main theme song from Ni No Kuni:

Although you may believe Hisaishi excels in composing serene and graceful songs, one of his strengths is how he can mold the songs to any situation he desires. All you have to do is watch Princess Mononoke to see that!

I hope you learned something about Joe Hisaishi today (: Thanks for reading!

Tune in next week for another Music Monday!


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