memória! -The Very Best of Yoko Shimomura-

Album Title:
memória! -The Very Best of Yoko Shimomura-
Record Label:
Square Enix
Catalog No.:
Release Date:
March 26, 2014
Buy at CDJapan


Hello, I’m the composer Yoko Shimomura! Thank you very much for picking up this CD! Well now, it’s the 25th anniversary—I’ve been writing music for 25 years!! That’s a quarter of a century! It’s astonishing to me that I’ve ended up spending more than half of my life writing music. I’ve been given a chance to produce this commemorative album, and since we’re rapidly rushing towards the April 2013 date of my 25th anniversary, I’m down to the wire trying to finish up.

For this best-of disc, I once again was given a chance to choose songs from those projects I had the privilege of working on during my time at Square/Square Enix, out of my 25 years as a composer. Although there were leftover tracks I passed on due to them not being a good fit for the previous album, drammatica, I wanted a fresh start for this new best-of compilation. I kept this in mind as I picked songs. As usual, I made some choices that have the vague scene of my own selfish preferences (haha), but I selected music mainly from those tunes that were most-requested. What do you all think?

Now, will you promise me something? There’s more to come in this mini-introduction to the music, but it would make me so happy if you could listen first, before reading any further. If you could lend your ears to the music without the preconception of any words, I would be delighted. And then, after that, if you read my comments and listen once again, perhaps my stories of hardship and silliness from those days will make you chuckle or cry (haha)—and perhaps you can enjoy the listening experience a second time.

Music cannot halt the flow of time. People can never stem the flow in any way. Time absolutely cannot be freely manipulated, and people wonder if their hearts and souls can’t be moved by that ephemeral “something” music holds within it. Maybe if we had a time machine, perhaps our perception of music might change? For me to be able to live in this day and age is truly a blessing, I think. While surrendering oneself to that flow of time—to the overwhelming reality that nowhere exists a guarantee that today’s happiness will follow us into tomorrow, that one can never know whether or not the sorrows of today will continue tomorrow—if the music I’ve made can color everyone’s “now,” and if that “now” accumulates and goes towards making “the future,” that would be the greatest delight for me.

Now that we’ve reached the end, I want to mention those who worked alongside me in producing this wonderful arrangement: Miss Kameoka, Chopin Nakayama, and Miss Miyano of Shangri-La, Tsutomu Satomi, who provided his assistance on the work, and Mr. Yoshida and Miss Miyazawa of Square Enix. And then of course all of the esteemed musicians who turned in such wonderful performances—oh, and you, reading this right now! Thank you so very, very much! I’m so full of gratitude, I can’t even put it into words. I want to keep doing my best moving forward, so please continue to support my work!

Thanks Mom and Dad, my brother, friends, loved ones, and Chief, the whole “SQUARE ENIX” staff, and the “memória!” staff, too.
Thanks for giving me a stage on which to perform, and for all the joys that have made me who I am.
Thanks for the ocean, the mountain, the earth, the wind, the sky, the sun, music…
…and you.
Yoko Shimomura

Translated by Stephen Meyerink. Edited by Stephen Meyerink and Chris Greening. Please do not republish without written permission.

Posted on March 9, 2015 by Stephen Meyerink. Last modified on April 26, 2015.

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About the Author

is me! Hello there! I'm a Japanese-to-English video game and manga translator! I kept RPGFan Music running for a few years, studied Japanese in grad school, and now bounce back and forth between California and Tokyo in my endless quest to make Japanese video games magically transform into English ones. I'm a lifelong lover of game music, and I'm ever seeking ways to spread awareness and appreciation of the medium to both new and longtime listeners.

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