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Hyde performing with Vamps in New York City, 2010
|Birth name||Hideto Takarai (寶井 秀人)|
|Also known as|
|Born||January 29, 1969|
Hideto Takarai (寶井 秀人, Takarai Hideto, born January 29, 1969 in Wakayama, Japan), known by his stage name Hyde,[Note 1] is a Japanese musician, singer-songwriter, record producer, and actor. Best known as lead vocalist of the rock band L'Arc-en-Ciel since 1991, he is also the vocalist of Vamps and has a solo career.
Hyde rose to fame in the 1990s as part of L'Arc-en-Ciel, who have sold over 40 million records and was the first Japanese act to perform a solo show at Madison Square Garden. He began a successful solo career in 2001, releasing several number one singles, and many of his albums have reached the top five on the Oricon chart. In 2008, Hyde teamed up with K.A.Z to form the hard rock duo Vamps.
Through both his solo career and Vamps, Hyde has collaborated/toured with artists such as Apocalyptica, Motionless in White, Starset, Yoshiki, Sixx:A.M., In This Moment, and Danzig, and producers such as Kane Churko, Nicholas Furlong, Drew Fulk, and Howard Benson.
In 1991, Hyde left his band Jelsarem's Rod and joined L'Arc-en-Ciel, where he became the main lyricist and vocalist. L'Arc-en-Ciel was signed to Danger Crue Records, where they released their first official album Dune. It peaked at number five on Oricon's main chart, but topped its independent chart.
In December of 1997, L'Arc-en-Ciel sold out the 55,000-seat Tokyo Dome in a record-breaking four minutes. Since then, L'Arc-en-Ciel has sold-out the Tokyo Dome 16 times. By 2003, L'Arc-en-Ciel expanded their market overseas and had their first North American debut at Otakon in Baltimore, playing to an audience of 12,000 people. In April 2008, their Tour 2008 L'7 Trans Asia via Paris led them to 7 cities across the world, where a total of 320,000 people were in attendance. By 2012, L'Arc-en-Ciel became the first-ever Japanese act to sell out Madison Square Garden in New York.
Between the years 1993-2000, L'Arc-en-Ciel released 8 albums and in 1999, becoming the first Japanese musicians to not only release two albums simultaneously, but have both albums reach number 1 and number 2 on the Oricon charts, respectively.
After the success of their eighth studio album, Real, L'Arc-en-Ciel went on hiatus, during which each of the members pursued solo activities. Three years later, L'Arc-en-Ciel returned in 2003 for a series of seven concerts titled "Shibuya Seven Days" in June and July. In March 2004, their ninth album Smile was released, and the single "Ready Steady Go" became the opening theme for the anime Fullmetal Alchemist.
In the summer of 2004, L'Arc-en-Ciel officially debuted in North America, where they performed at the anime convention, Otakon in Baltimore, Maryland on July 31, 2004, as part of their Smile tour. The performance marked their first international performance outside of Asia.
To celebrate their 20th Anniversary, L'Arc-en-Ciel held their 20th L'Anniversary concert at Ajinomoto Stadium in Tokyo, a two-day event held from May 28–29, 2011, with each day dedicated to one-half of their career. All of the proceeds from the concerts were donated to the Great East Japan earthquake relief efforts.
By 2012, L'Arc-en-Ciel released several more albums, including their twelfth studio album, Butterfly, which marked their first world tour. The tour led the band from Shanghai, Taipei, London, Paris, Singapore, New York, Indonesia, Seoul, Japan, and concluded in Hawaii. On March 23, L'Arc-en-Ciel became the first Japanese act to ever perform at Madison Square Garden. At their concert in Hawaii, the mayor of Honolulu, Peter Carlisle, appeared at the show and declared May 31 to be "L'Arc-en-Ciel Day", saying he felt the band "made a great contribution to cultural activities, and built a bridge of friendship between Hawaii and Japan".
In 2014, L'Arc-en-Ciel performed at the National Stadium in Tokyo. A year later in 2015, the band put on yet another two-day event called "L'ArCasino", which was held outdoors at the Yumeshima Outdoor Special Stage in Osaka, constructed specifically for their use. L'Arc-en-Ciel announced a 23-city tour in 2020.
2000–2003: Going solo
Hyde marked his debut as a solo artist with the release of his first single, "evergreen" in October of 2001. The single was released under Hyde’s own record label, Haunted Records, which was a division of Sony’s Ki/oon Records. After releasing two more singles, "Angel's Tale" and "Shallow Sleep," Hyde released his first solo album, Roentgen, on March 27, 2002. An overseas edition featuring all-English lyrics was released in July of the same year.
In April 2003, Hyde starred alongside fellow Japanese rock musician Gackt in the film Moon Child, which was co-written by Gackt himself. The duo performed the duet "Orenji no Taiyou", which was used as the movie's theme song. The song was also released on Gackt's fourth full-length album, Crescent.
Hyde followed up Roentgen with the release of two new singles, "Hello" and "Horizon", in June and November of 2003, respectively. "Horizon" was used as the ending theme in Ryuhei Kitamura's film Sky High. His second solo album, 666, was released on December 3, 2003.
In December 2003, Hyde's song "Shining Over You" was used as the commercial song for the video game Baten Kaitos: Eternal Wings and the Lost Ocean.
In early 2004, Hyde kicked off his first-ever solo tour "Hyde 2004 First Tour: 666", which spanned 11 cities and 21 shows across Japan. In fall 2004, Hyde starred in his second film, Kagen no Tsuki, a live-action film adaption of the manga created by Ai Yazawa. In the film, Hyde's song "The Cape of Storms" from his previously-released Roentgen album was used as a plot line, and became the unofficial theme song for the movie.
2005-2006: Faith and going international
In the summer of 2005, L'Arc-en-Ciel released their 10th studio album, Awake. However, Hyde continued his solo activities in conjunction with L'Arc-en-Ciel's work. He composed the music for the song "Glamorous Sky," which was used in the movie Nana, a live-action adaption of the popular manga by Ai Yazawa. "Glamorous Sky" was performed by the movie's star Mika Nakashima, with Yazawa writing the lyrics. In August, Hyde and Nakashima performed "Glamorous Sky" live for the first time on the music program Music Station, with Hyde on guitar.
Later that year in the fall, the single "Countdown" was released on October 5, 2005 and marked Hyde's fifth solo single, and the first to be released off Faith. The single was released in both Japanese and English, and featured a hard rock version of Hyde's single "Evergreen". The Japanese version of "Countdown" was used for the Japanese movie, Stealth.
A cover of "Countdown" was used as the "semi-final" stage song in the Nintendo DS rhythm game, Moero! Nekketsu Rhythm Damashii Osu! Tatakae! Ouendan 2.
Later that month, Hyde hosted "Halloween of the Living Dead", a three-night event held at Club Citta from October 29-31, marking the first of many Halloween concerts to come. Each night of "Halloween of the Living Dead" featured performances not only by Hyde himself, but by other well-known Japanese musicians as well . Hyde created the special Halloween band, Jack-O-Lantern, specifically for the event, which consisted Hyde himself and the band, Monoral. Other artists/bands who took part in the three-day Halloween event included Uverworld, Olivia Lufkin, High and Mighty Color, Yasu (Janne Da Arc / Acid Black Cherry), and Mika Nakashima. Jack-O-Lantern played covers of their own respective works, as well as a cover of the original "Ghostbusters" theme song.
When Hyde's single, "Season's Call" was released on February 22, 2006, it was used as the second opening theme to the anime Blood+ and marked the second single to be released off his new album, Faith. Faith was released on April 26, 2006, and was the first full-length collaboration between Hyde and K.A.Z, with all the songs being arranged by the duo.
In 2006, Hyde signed on with Tofu Records as a solo artist, and on June 27, 2006, an overseas version of Faith was released which included a bonus DVD featuring music videos for both "Countdown" and "Season's Call." Following the release of Faith, Hyde, supported by Tofu Records, launched his debut U.S. tour Hyde Faith Tour 2006 across several cities in California. Following the completion of the tour, a DVD was released on November 8, 2006, which included documentary footage of Hyde's mini-U.S. tour.
In the spring of 2008, Hyde rejoined the guitarist, K.A.Z (Oblivion Dust), who had previously worked with him on both 666 and Faith, and formed the hard rock unit, Vamps. Vamps was signed to Vamprose, which was originally Hyde's own record label, "Haunted Records." Hyde assumed the role of lead vocalist, as well as rhythm guitarist, lyricist, and composer, while K.A.Z took on lead guitar, backing vocalist, and composer.
The new rock duo released their first single, "Love Addict" on July 2, 2008. The single would spark a series of single and album in the years to come. The first self-titled debut album, Vamps was released on June 10, 2009, just a little over a month before their first international tour.
Following the release of their first album, Vamps launched a ten-date tour in the United States, kicking off on July 11, 2009, with performances in New York, Hartford, Columbia, Baltimore, Seattle, Portland, San Francisco, Las Vegas, San Diego, and Los Angeles. Their appearances in Hartford and Columbia were part of the "Vans Warped Tour", making them the only Japanese act in the lineup that year. Their final performance in the United States took place at the Wiltern Theatre in L.A. and was later released on DVD. Vamps performed on board the battleship U.S.S. Missouri in Hawaii in early September, the first musical act to do so since Cher.
After the band's live tour in the U.S., they were named in the category "Billboard Japan Ranking International 2009" on January 31, 2010, in recognition of their success overseas. On July 28, 2010, Vamps released their second album, Beast. Hyde also took on his first gig as a voice actor, playing the producer of the musician Koogy, a character who is voiced by Showtaro Morikubo, in Bakuman. Vamps wrote a Japanese version of their song "Get Up" to be sung by Shotaro's character, which was then used in the anime. They then recorded it themselves as the coupling track to their single, "Memories."
In 2013, Vamps signed on with Universal Music Group's Delicious Deli Records and released their first compilation album, Sex Blood Rock n' Roll. In support of Sex Blood Rock n' Roll, Vamps teamed up with Live Nation for their first European tour in years, which also included their first-ever performance at a European rock festival, where they played the Download Festival 2014, held at Donington Park that year.
Vamps held their first-ever music festival, Vampark Festival 2015 in February at Nippon Budokan and featured acts such as Nothing More, Gerard Way (My Chemical Romance), Buckcherry, Sixx:A.M., Apocalyptica, etc. By April, they kicked off their 2015 world tour in Jakarta, before embarking on Sixx:A.M.’s U.S. “The Modern Vintage” tour as a support act. After the brief tour with Sixx:A.M., Vamps made their North American rock festival debut, performing at festivals such as Fort Rock, Welcome to Rockville, and Rock on the Range. They concluded their 2015 spring tour with a headlining show at the Best Buy Theatre in New York.
In addition to touring with Sixx:A.M. that spring, Vamps also headlined shows in Paris, London, Hong Kong, Taiwan, and all over Japan. By the late summer/early fall of 2015, Vamps headed to Latin America, and then to the U.S. once more, heading to San Francisco, as well as a sold-out show at the world-renowned venue, The Roxy, in Los Angeles. They returning to the UK as Special Guests on Apocalyptica’s UK tour in late November in support of the two bands' collaborative single, "Sin in Justice".
In early 2016, the band headed to the studio in Los Angeles with Grammy-nominated producer, Howard Benson (My Chemical Romance, Three Days Grace), to work on recording music for their fourth full-length album, Underworld. Vamps also performed on MTV: Unplugged for the first time with Apocalyptica and the show would be released on DVD/Blu-ray later on that year.
By 2017, Vamps released their 12th single, "Inside of Me" on September 16, 2017, with the title track featuring the musician Chris Motionless of the band Motionless In White. Vamps co-wrote "Rise or Die", the single's coupling song, with Richard Kruspe (Emigrate/Rammstein).
Vamps' fourth album, Underworld, was released at the end of April in 2017. On May 27, 2017, Vamps performed at the Blackest of the Black festival, hosted by Glenn Danzig, marking their 4th U.S. rock festival performance, featuring major American rock musicians Ministry, Atreyu, Suicidal Tendencies, and Danzig. Vamps then returned to Japan for a summer tour, but returned to the U.S. once more in the fall, marking their final tour before going on hiatus.
2018–present: Return to solo work
After Vamps announced their hiatus in the fall of 2017, Hyde resumed work as a solo artist, releasing his eighth single, "Who's Gonna Save Us" on June 27, 2018, which marked his first solo release in 12 years. Two more singles, "After Light" and "Fake Divine", were released June 29, 2018 and October 24, 2018, respectively.
In 2018, Hyde also kick-started his solo activities by collaborating with noted musicians, such as Yoshiki and Mika Nakashima. Hyde produced Mika's single "Kiss of Death", which was released on March 7, 2018 and marked their second collaboration together in 13 years. The single was used as the opening theme song for the anime Darling in the Franxx. Hyde collaborated with Yoshiki on an original song titled "Red Swan". The single was used as the opening theme song for the third season of the anime Attack on Titan. The song was released worldwide on October 3, 2018, and features Yoshiki on piano and Hyde on vocals.
In the summer of 2018, Hyde kicked off his first solo tour in over a decade. Hyde Live 2018 tour commenced on June 29, 2018 in Tokyo and spanned across 7 cities in Japan, with a total of 33 performances. Hyde also invited the American rock band Starset, whom Vamps previously toured with, to open for him during his 7-day stint at Zepp Tokyo. In order to promote the tour with Starset as a support act, Hyde's vocal tracks were added to Starset's original song, "Monster". The track was then re-released as "Monster feat. Hyde" in Japan on August 10, 2018, and was only made available on the Japanese version of Starset's album Vessels. The tour ended in Fukuoka on October 14, 2018.
In early 2019, Hyde collaborated once more with Yoshiki on Hyde's single "Zipang". The title refers to an old way of saying "Japan" and was released on February 6, 2019. The track featured Yoshiki on piano and Hyde on vocals, and its coupling song was a cover of Duran Duran's "Ordinary World". On March 20, 2019, Hyde's 11th single, "Mad Qualia" was released as the theme song for the Japanese version of Capcom's video game Devil May Cry 5.
Hyde's fourth solo album Anti was released in digital format on May 3, 2019, and later in CD format on June 19. Hyde teamed up with Drew Fulk (Bullet for My Valentine, Bad Wolves, Motionless in White) and Nick Furlong (Blink-182, Papa Roach, 5 Seconds of Summer, Diplo), amongst other producers, to write 10 new songs for the album. The CD format version of the album reached number 3 on the Billboard charts in Japan and marked his second full-length English album as a solo artist.
Earlier in May, Hyde joined In This Moment on their 13-date U.S. Tour, beginning May 7 in Louisville, KY and wrapping-up May 24 in Kansas City, MO. His tour stops also included an appearance at the Welcome to Rockville Festival in Jacksonville, FL (his set was cancelled due to severe weather), the Epicenter Festival in Charlotte, NC on May 11, the Japan Night concert in New York City on May 12, and concluded with a sold-out headlining show in Los Angeles on May 26.
In conjunction with the physical release of Anti in June, embarked on a 26-date domestic tour that commenced in Tokyo on June 22 and ended in Sapporo on September 1, 2019. Following the conclusion of his domestic tour, Hyde was invited to tour as a support act for Starset on their 35-date U.S. “Divisions” tour.
Hyde became a tourism ambassador for his hometown, Wakayama city in January 2019, and following his appointment, in December a train service named "Hyde Southern" began operating between Namba Station and Wakayamakō Station in Wakayama Prefecture. The trains, decorated with images of Hyde and local landmarks, will run until October 2020.
By the end of 2019, Hyde concluded the fall with his arena tour Hyde Live 2019 Anti Final and will end 2019 by performing at the event Rockin'on presents Countdown Japan 19/20 on December 29.
|"Who's Gonna Save Us"
|"Believing in Myself/Interplay"
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