Video game composer Hirokazu "Hip" Tanaka - also known as Chip Tanaka - has just released his first full album, and the opening single Beaver even has its own animated music video featuring Michael Jackson, several disembodied breasts and Donald Trump. The album is called Django and it launches today.
Tanaka created the music for games like Earthbound, Metroid, Super Mario Land, Kid Icarus and Balloon Fight, and today is president of Creatures, which is involved with the Pokémon franchise.
As well as working on music, Tanaka has assisted in many of Nintendo's hardware ventures, including the Famicom and Game Boy audio hardware, as well as the NES Zapper, Game Boy Camera, and Game Boy Printer.
Here's the official PR:
As an innovator who has been transmitting game music across the globe since the 1980s when he worked as a sound engineer at Nintendo, Hirokazu Tanaka knows chipsounds. His illustrious career has taken him from games (EarthBound Beginnings, EarthBound, Super Mario Land) to TV (the Pokémon animated series) to feature films. And now , for the first time ever, he is releasing a complete album under his stage name, Chip Tanaka.
For two decades, Tanaka has been channeling his singular inner whimsy and his love for reggae, dub, and techno to bridge the gap between game music and dance music. This collection of 13 tracks from his own personal label represents a new creative pinnacle. The music video for the lead tr ack, “Beaver,” has been produced by Jun Oson, known for his prolific work in the Asahi Shogakusei Shinbun newspaper, the NHK Educational TV series Aware! Meisakukun, and a number of advertising projects.
Says Tanaka, whose live shows have taken him across Japan and abroad: “If my music can be divided into ʻfor adultsʼ and ʻfor kids,ʼ then this is the culmination of m y harder side, the kind of game music you hear in EarthBoundʼs battle tracks.”