Plants vs. Zombies 2: Egypt Theme on the piano

January 21, 2014 at 2:40 pm | Posted in Plants vs. Zombies piano version series | Leave a comment
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Hi you guys! So a lot of folks have been asking me whether or not I contributed any music to Plants vs. Zombies 2. To answer your question: Yes, a lot of my compositions from the original PvZ were remixed for the sequel; I also composed the music you hear during the Egypt stage. Originally I gave it a silly pun name, as I did with all the earlier tracks (“Walk like an Egyptian Zombie” heh heh)… Anyways, I hope you enjoy ^_^/

First Day

November 19, 2013 at 11:49 pm | Posted in Uncategorized | 4 Comments
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I was really surprised that a number of folks had recognized my voice in a song I wrote for an iPhone game called High School Story. Since then a bunch of folks asked if I’d put up a video for it, so I tried my best to get that finished up today^^ This song is called, “First Day”… And I created it for my friends at Pixelberry Studios. There are some really talented writers there, and I really like some of the things they’re doing to help with education and anti-bullying (they recently partnered with cybersmile.org). They’re also fun to play board games and drink tea with.

Anyways… I hope you enjoy ^_^/

Oh, one more thing: So the reason I’m dressed up like that (yes that’s a blue wig) is because a while back the Pixelberry folks and I entered a Halloween contest all dressed as high school stereotypes (jocks, nerds, cheerleaders, goths, punks, etc.). We ended up losing to a group of people who went as Adventure Time characters, the ringleader being my artist for Rakuen, Emmy ^_^ Small world!

Bandcamp Video Game Music Special

November 5, 2013 at 11:30 am | Posted in Uncategorized | 2 Comments
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Bandcamp (the incredibly artist-friendly digital music store) just posted their weekly show, and this episode happens to be all about video game music! They interviewed a bunch of video game composers (Danny Baronowsky, Austin Wintory, Jimmy Hinson, me, etc.) while playing select tracks in the background. It’s a fun show, I’d suggest checking it out if you enjoy game music and the composers behind it ^_^/

Much thanks to Andrew Jervis for organizing it, it was a pleasure participating in this.

Radical Dreamers and Cardboard Cutouts

August 12, 2013 at 3:05 pm | Posted in Uncategorized | 6 Comments
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So earlier today I was trying to explain something really weird that has happened to me at least twice in my life. I’ll tell you about the one incident I remember most clearly. I was in Home Depot, walking with some friends, and I noticed a man standing in front and slightly to the right of me. I wasn’t making eye contact with him, but I was aware of his presence. And for some reason, my brain decided that he was a cardboard cutout.

At this point, we continue walking towards him, and I’m now looking directly at him trying to figure out what this cardboard cutout is advertising. “Is this a paint advertisement?” “Is this for garden supplies?” Then suddenly he moves, and I get so startled that I scream right at him! Of course, this startles him and he looks very confused. So after I catch myself, I start profusely apologizing, and awkwardly trying to explain to him that I thought he was a cardboard cutout. Then I thought, “wait, is that offensive?” So then I dive into all these weird disclaimers like, “n-not that you look like cardboard… I mean, I just, from far away you were standing so still… and I… I don’t know, I’m sorry!!” He was nice about it.

Time for a weird weird segue!! I had the pleasure of collaborating with Meine Meinung on one of my favorite video game songs (Radical Dreamers 盗めない宝石 from Chrono Cross, composed by Yasunori Mitsuda). This cover has 2 guitars, double bass, and vocals… and if you are familiar with Chrono Trigger, you should be able to pick up the nice throwback they put in the arrangement ^_^ Originally they asked if I wanted to come to their studio, but I’m not in Japan right now, so they edited me in. And I think it looks pretty cool… sort of like I’m there, and sort of like a cardboard cutout (get it? Because of my story earlier? Ah… ehhh… sorry)

For real though, these guys are awesome. If you haven’t checked them out yet, you will not be disappointed. They have some of the best video game music covers on youtube, they’re fantastic musicians, and they have a really good sense of humor ^__^ I hope you enjoy our new video!

Lament of the Highborne

July 26, 2013 at 6:16 pm | Posted in Uncategorized | 3 Comments
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Hi everyone, long time no see ^_^/

I’ve been sitting on some big news for quite a while now… A friend and I have been working on a special little game-related side project (it’s not Melolune, however it is set in the same universe). I’m hoping to be able to talk about it soon, once all the major details are set in stone. Because I’ve been spending the majority of my free time devoted to this (in addition to tackling random things that have come up in life), I’ve been a bit less frequent with my youtube uploads (and by “a bit less” I mean I haven’t posted anything in 5 months ~_~)… So I must apologize for this and say thank-you for all of the kind messages you folks have sent me via youtube and twitter asking if I was okay ^__^

Happily, I was able to complete a new video this week! It is a vocal-only cover of “Lament of the Highborne,” a hauntingly beautiful song composed by Russell Brower for World of Warcraft. I was a bit hesitant to arrange this song because the original is already so perfect (and there are so many other lovely covers out there). I thought, “what could I possibly contribute to this?” But I had fun experimenting with harmonies, and revisiting a classical singing style that I haven’t done in years. I really hope you’ll enjoy^^

Terra’s Theme

February 21, 2012 at 9:08 pm | Posted in Uncategorized | 8 Comments
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Hi everyone! I hope you’ll enjoy my first collaboration with my friend Britaney! She is a really talented violinist who does covers of video game and anime music on youtube. You can find her channel here. We decided to arrange and perform Nobuo Uematsu’s lovely composition, Terra’s theme from Final Fantasy VI. I hope you’ll enjoy!

“Kimi o Nosete” and “Everything’s Alright”

February 13, 2012 at 6:15 pm | Posted in Uncategorized | 7 Comments
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I’m really excited to share a couple new videos with you! This week I posted my 2nd collaboration with lonlonjp, who is a really talented guitarist from Japan. We decided to do “Kimi o Nosete” which is the ending theme song from my favorite movie of all time, Laputa. If you haven’t watched this anime, I strongly recommend it… it’s adventurous, funny, sweet, and so whimsical! When I visited the Ghibli museum in 2005, I got Sheeta’s pendant as a souvenier (which I’m wearing in this video):

For the second video… I have a short announcement to go along with it: Due to copyright stuff, SOPA, etc. I thought it would be safe to post all my original music from here on out at my 2nd channel. Per request, I’m planning on redoing some older songs, as well as posting new songs and arranged/piano versions of video game soundtracks I work on. I really hope you’ll check it out and subscribe so that I can share these things with you! For the first song that I’m posting here, I decided to redo “Everything’s Alright” from the wonderful game “To the Moon.”

I hope you’re all doing well! And if you have any requests for my 2nd channel, please let me know ^_^

Why I love video game music

December 1, 2011 at 5:31 pm | Posted in Video Games | 7 Comments
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I’ve been experimenting with a new video setup in order to try and improve the audio quality of my piano videos. I really wanted Hard Man’s theme from Mega Man 3 to sound good because it’s very special to me… it was the first piece of video game music I had ever learned when I was a kid, and it launched me in the direction of loving video game music and eventually pursuing it as a career. So… here is my piano improvisation of Hard Man’s theme from Mega Man 3:

I also suggest listening to the original NES version… the middle part is especially great and really matches the fast-paced feel of his stage. Lastly, here is a vlog that I made explaining why I love video game music (sorry for the weird thumbnail… youtube always seems to catch me in the weirdest poses, or when I’m half-blinking):

Zelda 25th Anniversary Indie Game Composer Tribute Album

November 22, 2011 at 11:30 am | Posted in Uncategorized | 3 Comments
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This post is for all the Zelda and video game music fans out there! A while back, my friend Roger decided to organize a tribute album for Zelda’s 25th Anniversary. He pulled together a bunch of indie game composers from around the world who all share a love for Zelda and Koji Kondo’s beautiful music, and we each contributed a track that was inspired by music from the series. The finished album is now online at zelda25.ocremix.org, and it’s completely FREE to download, so we’d love for you to check it out ^_^

And for those who are interested, this is my contribution (a track inspired by the “Forest Theme” from Link to the Past). It’s called “Fushigina Forest” (which means mysterious forest):

Plants vs. Zombies piano versions #10: Ultimate Battle

August 30, 2011 at 2:43 pm | Posted in Plants vs. Zombies piano version series | 5 Comments
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Hi everyone! I’m excited to let you all know that I’ve finally posted a piano version of Ultimate Battle (the Conveyor Belt level) from Plants vs. Zombies! I’ve gotten a ton of requests for this one (more than any other PvZ track), so I really hope you enjoy it ^_^ Since a lot of the requests came from a while back, I’d really appreciate if you could let folks know that it’s online now!

Yes, it was laundry day when I recorded this.

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