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For every person I've ever spoken with that has played any of the Final Fantasy series, one of the things that has always come across as being a favorite has been the soundtrack. Nobuo Uematsu has been responsible for creating the music for all the American released Final Fantasies, Chrono Trigger, Mario RPG, and the Squaresoft combat game, Ergheiz.

The wholescale musical talent of this man is enormous. For Final Fantasy VII alone, he wrote four CDs full of music. And not only is the music he writes terrific to listen to, its even better to have as wallpaper music, providing with very few loud, interruptive points of the music.

Uematsu was born in 1959 near Kouchi City, Japan. At the age of 22, he graduated from the Univeristy of Kanagawa. Three years later, he received a phone call from a friend working at a new fledgling company known as Squaresoft, and was asked if he'd like to write music for one of their video games.

His themes for the characters of Final Fantasy VII stick out paricularly in my mind as being top notch. Nobuo really knows how to build an atmosphere, and gives excellent emotion to his music.

Nobuo Uematsu is perhaps the most widely known composer of video game-related music alive. Sometimes referred to as the John Williams of the video game world, Uematsu does not take such a comparison lightly--even though he has admitted to wanting to be Elton John as a younger man. He was born in Kouchi City, Japan on March 21, 1959. He began playing piano at twelve years old, and has never had a formal lesson. He currently lives in Tokyo, Japan with his wife Reiko, and his dog, Pao.

A graduate of the University of Kanagawa, he began to play in small, local bands as a keyboard player, but quickly found that he enjoyed writing music much moreso than actually playing it. In fact, he needs very little to warm him up, saying, "All I need is a piano." In 1985, a friend pointed him to a small video game firm called Square Co. LTD., and they hired him almost immediately. He enjoys Irish music, making beer and playing the fiddle, and most of all, his love is creating the music so many Final Fantasy fans known him for. Surprisingly, he dislikes RPGs like Final Fantasy, saying that roleplaying games "take too much time". But he even recognizes the limitations and gifts of his chosen profession. He recognizes that the video game genre gets shipped quickly from place to place, where many people can hear his music. He doubts that he would have had as much fame had he chosen a life as a simple composer somewhere in Japan. At the same time, he says: "What we are looking to create is not the perfect musical composition, but a superb video game as a whole," rather than focussing strictly on the music by itself.

Sources: http://www.nobuouematsu.com, various places I can't seem to remember at this time.

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