For the past fifteen years, one constant for Konami’s Bemani music game series has been the musical stylings of composter Yasuhiro “TAG” Taguchi. Today, he announced his is leaving the Tokyo-based game company.
“I’ve now decided to go freelance as a composer after being employed at my company for fifteen years,” Taguchi tweeted. “While composing is my main skill, I’m also able to score music games and DJ.” Taguchi also posted his resume on Twitter as well as info on how to get in touch.
The news started trending in Japan under the keywords “TAG退社” or “TAG taisha”, meaning “TAG resigns.”
The Bemani brand debuted in 1997, and Konami has employed in-house artists like Taguchi to ensure a regular stream of compelling music games. Taguchi’s departure is a loss for the Tokyo-based game company, but means that he’ll be able to expand his musical talents.
Taguchi first worked on Dance Dance Revolution Supernova 2, creating the step charts. His Bemani debut song for the Guitar Freaks and Drum Mania series was “El Dorado.” He also lent his talents to other games in the Bemani series, including Dance Dance Revolution, Pop’n Music, Reflec Beat, and Jubeat.
Tag was one of the more enigmatic Bemani artists, appearing for the first time, although in sunglasses, in Beatmania IIDX animation with the track “She Is My Wife,” which can be seen above. It is not to be missed.
Over the years, Tag used an array of other names, including Super Star Mitsuru/Super Star Ayaka, Capacity Gate, and, perhaps best of all, Climax of Maxx 360.
This week, Taguchi will debut a new original song on his YouTube channel.
Konami has been a music game pioneer, leading the way on merging music, dance, instruments, club culture, and games in a way that long predates the Guitar Hero and Rock Band music game booms of the mid-2000s.