Munetaka Higuchi

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Munetaka Higuchi
MUNETAKAHIGUCHI1.JPG
Background information
Also known asDavy
Born(1958-12-24)December 24, 1958
Nara, Japan
Origin Osaka, Japan
DiedNovember 30, 2008(2008-11-30) (aged 49)
Osaka, Japan
Genres Heavy metal, rock
Occupation(s)Drummer, record producer
Years active1973–2008
Formerly of

Munetaka Higuchi (樋口 宗孝, Higuchi Munetaka) (December 24, 1958 – November 30, 2008) was a Japanese musician and record producer. He is best known as the original drummer of the heavy metal band Loudness, but first rose to prominence as a member of Lazy in the 1970s.

Contents

Career

From a young age, he was considered a talented drummer. During his high school years, Higuchi played in seven bands. But he was not happy with this situation, wanting to focus his time on only one band. At this point, schoolmate and future bandmate Akira Takasaki came along and they formed Lazy. [1] Lazy was formed by very young musicians and started playing easy-listening pop-rock, that slowly progressed to more complex music. Higuchi was identified in the band by the moniker "Davy". [2]

When he and Takasaki shifted their musical interests to hard rock and heavy metal, they founded Loudness in 1981. [1] During his time with Loudness, Higuchi released his first solo album, Destruction, in 1983. [3] In the same year he produced and played drums on Mari Hamada's studio albums Lunatic Doll and Romantic Night . [4] He left Loudness in 1992, and resumed his solo career in the late-1990s, working also on side projects, including Sly (with former Loudness' singer Minoru Niihara), [5] Bloodcircus, Rose of Rose, and the Rock 'n' Roll Standard Club Band, besides collaborating with dozens of Japanese artists, both as producer and as drummer.

In 1997, as "Munetaka Higuchi & Dream Castle", he released the album Free World. The band featured many famous musicians from the jazz and rock/metal spheres, like Steve Vai, Stanley Clarke, Billy Sheehan, Ty Tabor, Terry Bozzio, T. M. Stevens, Ronnie James Dio, Richie Kotzen, Paulinho Da Costa and others. [6] The album was released on February 21, 1997, in Japan. [7] In 1998, he produced Cozy Powell Forever ~ Tribute to Cozy Powell, [8] a tribute album to the recently deceased drummer Cozy Powell, very popular in Japan. For the album, Higuchi had the collaboration of the best Japanese heavy metal musicians and was able to reunite his former bandmates of Loudness. [9] A tour in support of the album was made with musicians from Loudness and Sly. [10]

He returned to Loudness in 2000, maintaining his high profile in the metal genre.

On April 14, 2008, just two months after Loudness released the album, Metal Mad , it was announced that he was diagnosed with hepatocellular carcinoma, a type of liver cancer. [11] On November 30, 2008, Munetaka died at the age of 49 in a hospital in Osaka, Japan. [12] His death had a vast echo in Japanese media and in the entertainment business. [13]

Equipment

Higuchi endorsed Pearl Drums, Sabian Cymbals, Remo drumheads and Vic Firth drumsticks.

Discography

Related Research Articles

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<i>Devil Soldier</i> 1982 studio album by Loudness

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Hurricane Eyes is the seventh studio album by Japanese heavy metal band Loudness. It was released in 1987 worldwide with standard English lyrics. A "Japanese Version" was subsequently released only in Japan later in the year with Niihara singing most of the lyrics in Japanese. The album was produced by the famous producer and sound engineer Eddie Kramer, who had worked with the likes of The Rolling Stones, Led Zeppelin, Jimi Hendrix and Kiss. The song "So Lonely", a reprise of "Ares Lament" from the album Disillusion of 1984, was instead produced by Andy Johns, another world-famous producer. This was the last Loudness album to enter the US Billboard 200 chart, where it remained for 4 weeks, peaking at No. 190.

<i>Heavy Metal Hippies</i> 1994 studio album by Loudness

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<i>Spiritual Canoe</i> 2001 studio album by Loudness

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<i>The Everlasting</i> (album) 2009 studio album by Loudness

The Everlasting is the twenty-second studio album by Japanese heavy metal band Loudness. It was released in 2009 only in Japan, after the death of original drummer Munetaka Higuchi, whose pre-recorded drum tracks were used on this album. It was also 15th and last album recorded by the original line-up. The song "I Wonder" introduces new drummer Masayuki Suzuki. The album also features a quasi-return to their 1980s sound in "Flame of Rock" and "I Wonder". The cover artwork is inspired by a Thailand's sculpture called "Budda Head in Tree".

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Tusk of Jaguar is the first solo studio album by Japanese guitarist Akira Takasaki, best known for his work in the rock bands Loudness and Lazy. It was released in 1982 only in Japan and reissued in 2005. The album is actually a joint effort of Takasaki and keyboard player Masanori Sasaji, who composed three tracks and arranged and co-produced the recording. A large contribution was given to the album by Takasaki's bandmates in Loudness, who play in most tracks and collaborated to the musical arrangements. However, the music of Tusk of Jaguar is much more varied than in any Loudness' album, with its music ranging from hard rock to progressive rock to jazz fusion, reminiscing of some Dixie Dregs' and Al Di Meola's works. The precise and fast guitar playing by Takasaki is anyway always present in every track and he even takes the lead vocal spot in the song "Ebony Eyes".

<i>Cozy Powell Forever</i> 1998 compilation album by various artists

Cozy Powell Forever is a tribute album dedicated to the British rock drummer Cozy Powell, who died a few months before the album release. The album was produced by Japanese drummer Munetaka Higuchi, with the contribution of many prominent Japanese rock and metal musicians and of the western musicians Carmine Appice and Tony Franklin. The songs covered in the album span from the early career of Powell in the Jeff Beck Group, to his membership in Rainbow, Whitesnake and Michael Schenker Group, to his solo production. Higuchi brought the songs of this album on tour in Japan and in 1999 released a live album with recordings of a show held in Tokyo.

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Sly was a Japanese heavy metal supergroup formed in 1994 by former members of popular groups of the Japanese metal scene. The line-up included singer Minoru Niihara and drummer Munetaka Higuchi, guitarist Shinichiro Ishihara (Earthshaker) and bassist Koichi Terasawa (Blizard). Sly disbanded in 1998, with Niihara and Higuchi re-joining Loudness in 2000 and Ishihara taking part in the reformation of his former group Earthshaker in 1999.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Crazy Night</span> 1984 single by Loudness

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References

  1. 1 2 Pecere, Antonio (February 9, 2008). "Storia in breve!" (in Italian). Netlog. Archived from the original on July 14, 2011. Retrieved June 2, 2012.
  2. "Lazy Biografia" (in Portuguese). J-Metal. 2004. Archived from the original on July 10, 2012. Retrieved March 31, 2010.
  3. Eder, Bruce. "Munetaka Higuchi Destruction review". Allmusic . Rovi Corporation . Retrieved June 2, 2012.
  4. "Mari Hamada Romantic Night credits". Allmusic . Rovi Corporation . Retrieved June 2, 2012.
  5. "SLY". Encyclopaedia Metallum . Retrieved June 2, 2012.
  6. "Munetaka Higuchi with Dream Castle – Bell video". NME.com. New Musical Express . Retrieved June 2, 2012.
  7. "Munetaka Higuchi – Free World". Encyclopaedia Metallum . Retrieved June 2, 2012.
  8. Siegler, Joe (January 27, 1999). "Cozy Powell Tribute Albums". The Official Cozy Powell Site. Archived from the original on March 4, 2000. Retrieved November 21, 2010.
  9. Waters, Scott. "Tribute Disks". Nolifetilmetal.com. Retrieved March 24, 2010.
  10. "Cozy Powell Forever Live". Amazon. Retrieved November 21, 2010.
  11. LOUDNESSリーダーが肝細胞がん. Sponichi Annex (in Japanese). Sports Nippon Newspapers. April 15, 2008. Archived from the original on May 21, 2010. Retrieved March 24, 2010.
  12. "LOUDNESS Drummer MUNETAKA HIGUCHI Dead At 49". Blabbermouth.net . Roadrunner Records. November 30, 2008. Archived from the original on May 24, 2012. Retrieved June 2, 2012.
  13. "LOUDNESS、樋口宗孝、海外でも惜しまれる" (in Japanese). WeRockCity.com. December 5, 2008. Archived from the original on May 22, 2010. Retrieved March 24, 2010.