Yasuharu Takanashi, music composer NARUTO & BORUTO


Anime Trending had the incredible opportunity to interview music composer Yasuharu Takanashi and his involvement in NARUTO and BORUTO: NEXT GENERATIONS. The complete collection of soundtracks for NARUTO, NARUTO SHIPPUDEN, and BORUTO: NEXT GENERATIONS are now available from Milan Records.

Yasuharu Takanashi

When you have been approached to dial for NARUTO, have you ever expected the show to get as big as it made it? How did you feel when you realized that people all over the world were listening and loving your music?

At first, I didn’t really think so. Little by little, I realized that people appreciated the series as well as my music through the media. For example, when I found people covering my songs on YouTube and the like, I was really touched. “What? People from overseas are playing my songs! I was really happy.

From your many years of composing for the NARUTO series, which piece is your favorite and why?

It’s very difficult for me to choose the best (laughs).

As for sentimental songs, “Sadness and Sorrow” was the first ballad I wrote for. NARUTO when it first came out, so it left a very strong impression on me.

(As for the uplifting songs), there are so many that it’s hard to decide (laughs).

What were your favorite instruments to work with to compose for NARUTO?

The one I use most often is the organ (Hammond organ). There are a lot of ensembles in music, like orchestral ensembles with Japanese musical instruments, but the organ is the strongest foundation, so I use it most often when I’m looking for that group sound.

The best part about using Japanese instruments is that I tried to incorporate Japanese instruments into the rock sound of “Musashi”. Musicians and bands overseas were proud to use their own traditional music and instruments, so we wanted to create a new sound using traditional Japanese instruments and music because we are Japanese. We wanted to create a new sound using traditional Japanese instruments and music because we are Japanese. And from there it kind of evolved and flourished to the sound of “Yaiba” in NARUTO.

As a member of the Musashi Project, you worked with composer Toshiro Masuda on the production of NARUTO. What was it like working with Toshiro Masuda during the first season of NARUTO? What have you learned from working together?

Mr. Masuda and “Musashi” were clearly divided into different sections, and Mr. Masuda was very good at writing songs about everyday life. “Musashi” was in charge of the battle songs and other intense songs, and Masuda-san was in charge of the other Songs.

Which room are you most proud of and why do you feel that way?

That’s a tough question (laughs) because I can’t really narrow it down. The one I like the most is the music of NARUTO! I put a lot of love into every song, so I love them all. If anyone who listens thinks, “I love this song! I don’t think there is a number one or a number two for me. The song my fans love the most is the song I’m most proud of.

NARUTO is famous for its character-driven music – Senya, which many considered Itachi’s theme, is one example. How do you approach musical composition centered on specific characters?

The first thing that happens is that the director and the sound director order me to write a theme song for this character. Then I read the original story and tried to make a song that matches the character’s image.

© 2002 MASASHI KISHIMOTO / 2017 BORUTO All rights reserved.

Boruto: The Next Generations Of Naruto has already received praise for its soundtrack. How is the music different in Boruto compared to NARUTO? How did you want to distinguish the music between the two series?

To be honest, I have been using fewer Japanese instruments since Boruto. In NARUTO, there was an overall muddy or rustic feeling, but in Boruto, we decided to make it more modern and elegant. However, as the story progressed and Naruto and Sasuke became active again, we decided to go back to the nuances of the first sound… has the sound of those days.

In the end, how did you expect the audience to feel when they listened to your music?

I think the way to enjoy music is different for each person, so whether someone listens to and enjoys the music I made is all that matters to me, and how you feel is up to you. Its good! This is what makes me the happiest.

Which track from the soundtrack was your first song written for the series and how did you feel when you finished your first song?

In fact, it was “Sadness and Sorrow”. It was actually the first song I wrote for the NARUTO series, and at that point, the Musashi Project members split up to work on it. I thought it was a good song (laughs).

For the anecdote, around the second half of the story of NARUTO SHIPPUDEN, I really wanted to perform this song again. So I asked the directors if we could re-record “Sadness and Sorrow” once again! And it happened.

How the NARUTO series affected your career?

It changed my life more than my career! Thanks to NARUTO, I made connections with people from many countries. The word “link” is used a lot in this work, and it connected me to everyone, and the music made that connection stronger.

A final comment for the fans as they have the chance to listen to your music?

In fact, I was waiting for the release of this music!

I have received a lot of messages on my social networks from people in different countries asking me “When will the soundtrack be available?” so I really want to deliver it to them ASAP.

When I heard that the music distribution was going to start, I was so happy that I wanted to tell everyone about it ASAP, and as a musician it makes me happiest when people can still enjoy more music.

Now have fun to the fullest! And I’ll see you in person next time ♪.

康 治 / Yasuharu TAKANASHI


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