Yoshida Brothers, the foremost figure among Tsugaru shamisen artists, have celebrated their 20th debut anniversary in 2019.
Originally from Noboribetsu, Hokkaido, the brothers started learning shamisen at the tender age of 5. Later they apprenticed themselves to Takashi Sasaki the First, the Tsugaru shamisen artist in 1990.
Came to fame through the Tsugaru-Shamisen National Competition and released the debut album ‘Ibuki’ in 1999. They hold numerous hit records, which is unprecedented in Japanese traditional music industry. They have released 15 albums and other works so far. Since their official debut in the U.S. in 2003, they have been engaged in performances and collaborations with various artists around the world.
In 2015, they released <PRANA> in collaboration with ‘Naruto Exhibition - Masashi Kishimoto - Celebration of the Completion of Serialization’ which became a hot topic among the audience later.
In recent years, Ryoichiro initiated a new Japanese traditional music group WASABI that focus on the performance at schools with Japanese instruments. Kenichi was designated as the culture communication ambassador by the Agency of Cultural Affairs and went to Barcelona, Spain for activities in 2015, and he continues to give annual lectures on Tsugaru shamisen at the Barcelona Conservatory of Music.
In 2017,they recorded ‘While My Guitar Gently Weeps’, the theme song for Japanese-dubbed version of the film ‘Kubo and the Two Strings’. Besides, they produced ‘Cool Spiral’, a video BGM for Jason Paul, the free runner with 2 million video clicks and sponsored by RedBull.
Collaboration with GinyuforcE, the pioneer in Cyalume Dance / Wotagei is one of their recent works. The lessons and qualifiers for World Battle were held in 10 countries and the final was held at Kanda Myojin Hall in Akihabara the holy ground of the dancers. They provided IKAZUCHI as the theme song for Yoshida Brothers×Tom-H@ck CYALUME DANCE WORLD BATTLE. They performed at the opening of the "Tokyo 2020 Olympics One Year Ahead Ceremony 1Year to Go! "
In the same year, they decided to participate in GIBIATE PROJECT, in which famous Japanese creators will create a global project based on the theme of "Wa", and for the opening theme song of the anime project, "GIBIATE", which will start airing in July 2020, they will perform the song "GIBIATE" featuring famous guitarist SUGIZO, who is the member of the rock bands LUNA SEA and X JAPAN.
This year, they released the album "THE YOSHIDA BROTHERS" to celebrate the 20th anniversary of their debut.
They are expected to go beyond the framework of Japanese traditional performing arts as unique and world-class Tsugaru shamisen artists.