If you don’t keep up with the Japanese gaming world, you probably don’t know about Mamoru Samuragochi. This composer that worked on series' like Onimusha and Resident Evil was considered a modern day Beethoven. You see, he was deaf, and yet he consistently wrote absolutely beautiful pieces of music. His pinnacle achievement is called “Hiroshima Symphony” a work dedicated to the lives lost in the nuclear bombings in world war two. He will even be featured at the Winter Olympics in Sochi this month as Japanese figure skater Daisuke Takahashi has chosen to play Sonata for Violin, another Samuragochi work, for his performance. Truly this man is a musical genius.
Except, you know… he isn’t. Samuragochi is a fraud. A gigantic fraud. And I’m not just saying he sucks at fighting games, though that’s probably also true. It turns out that Samuragochi never actually wrote any of his music. Instead, he gave his thoughts and ideas to a third party composer who then wrote the music for him. Samuragochi is, in fact, deaf and can play the piano, so it’s not like he is using recorded performance any time he plays live. But all the work he has done, from Hiroshima Symphony on hasn’t been his own. For more than 10 years he has fleeced the public into thinking that he was a musical genius, making an incredible amount of money off of albums, shows, and contract deals.
Samuragochi’s lawyer, who himself wanted to remain anonymous, said to Japan Times that Samuragochi at the very least feels bad about his actions. “It is totally inexcusable and he deeply regrets [what happened],” the lawyer said. “He is mentally distressed and not in a condition to properly express his own thoughts.”
Well if Samuragochi did not compose these beautiful pieces, who did? Unfortunately, neither Samuragochi or his lawyer are telling. “I’ve been told that there are certain circumstances that make it hard for the person [who composed the works] to come out in public, and Samuragochi has come to describe himself as the sole composer,” the lawyer said.
As you can imagine, Samuragochi’s career is basically over. His music label, Nippon Columbia Co., will stop shipping his CDs or selling digital versions of his music effective immediately. Publisher Tokyo Hustle Copy Inc. will cancel all further releases of his musical scores. His tour organizer says that it is likely that all of his tours will stop, though a final decision has not yet been made. Even TV stations that have featured Samuragochi and his works have apologized for not uncovering his deception sooner.
As for his video game career? It’s also likely over. Samuragochi built his fame in the video game market and it’s unlikely that any developer will be contracting him again anytime soon.
According to Samuragochi’s official website, he is a Hiroshima native, a son of atomic bomb survivors, and a self-taught composer that played Bach at age 10. His current actions have shed doubt on this story as well. What do you think? How much of a fraud is Samuragochi? Let us know in the comments.
Senior Contributing Writer