Created | Updated Jan 13, 2012
A composer of astonishing talent, Yoko Kanno is best known in her native Japan for her Anime and computer game soundtracks. Probably the most prolific composer ever to be produced by the island nation, Kanno-sensei is responsible not only for a host of soundtracks but also a bewildering array of orchestral compositions, pop albums and other works.
One of the most remarkable features of Yoko Kanno's music is the range of styles and ensembles covered. She has composed everything from full symphonies for choir and orchestra to pop tracks, from jazz to opera. More than a jack of all trades, Ms Kanno exhibits a deep understanding of every style and instrument for which she composes.
Beginning her musical career as keyboardist for the band Tetsu 100% in 1987, Kanno-sensei joined the computer game company Koei in '88. There she began composing professionally, creating all of the music for the Nobunaga's Ambition and Uncharted Waters series, among others.
In 1994, she made her solo Anime soundtrack debut, creating the complete score of the Macross Plus video series. Still considered one of the definitive works of the genre, Macross Plus was an instant hit, and catapulted Kano-sensei's carreer to new heights. For the curious, Macross Plus is available in translated form on both the UK and US markets, as well as a cinematic release and two soundtrack CDs from the show.
More recent works include the soundtracks to the epic Tenkuu no Escaflowne (also available on US video release and 4 Japanese CDs), Brain Powerd (sic) and Cowboy Bebop. Kanno-sensei currently has a solo album of original works on Japanese release, entitled Song to Fly.
Over the years Ms Kanno has worked with a number of world-class orchestras, including the Israel, Czech and Warsaw Philharmonics.
Note that the adoration and idolisation expressed above is entirely the product of the mind of a avid Kanno fan, and as such cannot be considered legally or morally binding. But that's not to say I'm not right...