As we brought out a masterpiece to the world [...], we asked ourselves, 'Can we really fight 24 hours?' And the answer was, 'We will fight 8,760 hours! Huff, huff, huff, huff.'Nobuo Uematsu, liner notes of Final Fantasy V: Original Sound Version
Nobuo Uematsu (植松 伸夫) is a prolific composer of video game music, best known for his work on the Final Fantasy series.
Nobuo Uematsu was born on March 21, 1959, in Kochi, Kochi Prefecture, Japan. He started to play music at the age of twelve when, inspired by Elton John, he taught himself how to play the piano. He started his professional career writing music for commercials after graduating from Kanagawa University. He joined Square Co., Ltd. in 1986 and began composing music for video games. He parted ways with Square, now Square Enix, in 2004. For those eighteen years Uematsu composed the music for over thirty games including, most notably, the Final Fantasy series, the first two SaGa games, and some of Chrono Trigger. In 2004, Uematsu founded Smile Please, Ltd. and still composes video game music, as well as organizes live performances of his work.
In addition to writing video game music, Uematsu wrote the theme song for the anime Oh My Goddess! and for top Japanese singers Emiko Shiratori and RIKKI. He has written a column for Weekly Famitsu magazine called "Nobuo Uematsu no Minna Sounano?" for several years.
The Final Fantasy VIII theme song, "Eyes On Me", which he wrote and produced for Hong Kong pop diva Faye Wong, sold a record breaking 400,000 copies. It also won "Song of the Year (Western Music)" at the 14th Annual Japan Gold Disc Awards in 1999. This was the first time a song from a video game had won the honor. He received the honor of being named an "innovator" in Time Magazine's "Time 100: The Next Wave - Music".
Uematsu's Final Fantasy compositions were first performed live in 2003 by his band, The Black Mages, at the GC Games Convention in Leipzig, Germany. Since then, his music was featured in the 2004 tour known as "Tour de Japon: Music from Final Fantasy" which built upon the success of the "20020220 music from Final Fantasy" album. An American tour followed called "Dear Friends -Music from Final Fantasy-". Most recently, his music was performed at "VOICES: Music from Final Fantasy", which occurred in 2006 at the Pacifico Yokohama Conference and convention center. He has confirmed his participation in and wrote the opening song to "PLAY! A Video Game Symphony" which toured the world between 2006 and 2010.
In May 2010, a new Nobuo Uematsu piano album was announced, featuring some of his works played by classical pianist Benyamin Nuss. It was released on September 17, 2010, and was the first time a major classical label commemorated video game music.
Works in the series
Nobuo Uematsu appears as a Hummingway in the original Final Fantasy IV Developer's Office, where he offers to teach the party how to play music. He would later appear as a farmer in the 3D remake's new Developer's Office under the Italianized alias "Nobio Uemaccino".
In Final Fantasy Record Keeper, Uematsu's sprite appeared in several BRA★BRA events as a character named Nobbio.
- A Day in the Life of Nobuo Uematsu
- Square Enix archives: Nobuo Uematsu (English), via Internet Wayback Machine, as of December 2014.
- Square Enix Japan's official Uematsu page (Japanese), via Internet Wayback Machine, as of April 4, 2005.
- Smile Please Co., Ltd Official Website (Japanese)
- Nobuo Uematsu at RAWG
- Nobuo Uematsu at IMDB