Kitaro, with a Golden Globe Award, two Grammy nominations, and two dozen albums to his credit, is revered for his ability to capture the heart of the human spirit in his music. A blend of East meets West and Old meets New. Kitaro's real name is Masanori Takahashi. He was born into a Japanese Shinto farming family in Toyohashi, Japan in 1953. His culture was becoming increasingly Westernized as he grew up, however he continues to hold traditional values most important.
Inspired by the R & B music of Otis Redding, he taught himself to play the electric guitar in high school. He formed the " Far East Family Band " which released two albums of progressive rock in the early '70s. During 1972, while on a trip to Europe, Kitaro met Klaus Schulze, an innovative synthesist. He was so intreagued by the sounds he built his first synthesizer and played around with all sorts of unusual sounds.

      His first solo effort, Astral Voyage, was released in 1978 and was well recieved by cult followers. Later he produced the Silk Road soundtracks, a Japanese Television Documentary Series. His gentle, lush, and majestic melodies show his ability to embody the human spirit in his music. He created his albums in the privacy of his home studio near Mt. Fuji, Japan. Kitaro prefers to call his music simply " spiritual" and says " Feeling is the most important element in my music. "     By the mid '80s, he was still cosidered an underground artist in America, until he was picked up by Geffen Records in 1986. The next year, Mickey Hart, of The Greatful Dead, helped Kitaro with the release of, The Light of the Spirit, which was nominated for the Best New-Age Performance Grammy Award, and he made his first North American Live Tour.
     Somewhere in the late '80s or early '90s, Kitaro's style had changed, more theatrical and assertive, while still possessing a certain level of innocence and purity. Kitaro has lived in the United States fot the past five years now, on a 180-acre spred outside Boulder, Colorado in his 2500-square-foot home studio, ( "It's large enough to hold a 70-piece orchestra -- big enough for me! " he chuckles). All though he loves his country of Japan and his origins, he left due to a dislike of the new government and their attitudes of socialism and the distruction of artists' creativity. He does however, return each year to the foot of Mt. Fuji to perform the ritual drum ceremoney, he started in 1983. In this ritual, from sunrise to sunset, he beats towering Taiko drums so passionately that his hands often bleed.