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Background information
Birth nameSeba Jun
Born(1974-02-07)February 7, 1974
Nishi-Azabu, Minato, Tokyo, Japan
DiedFebruary 26, 2010(2010-02-26) (aged 36)
Shibuya, Tokyo, Japan
Resting placeTama Cemetery
Tokyo, Japan
Years active1995–2010
LabelsHydeout Productions
WebsiteHydeout Productions

Jun Seba (Japanese: 瀬葉 淳, Hepburn: Seba Jun, February 7, 1974 – February 26, 2010), better known by his stage name Nujabes (ヌジャベス, Nujabesu), was a Japanese record producer, audio engineer, DJ, composer and arranger best known for his atmospheric instrumental mixes sampling from hip hop, soul, and jazz, as well as incorporating elements of trip hop, breakbeat, downtempo, and ambient music.

Seba released two studio albums during his lifetime: Metaphorical Music (2003) and Modal Soul (2005), while the album Spiritual State was released posthumously in 2011. He was the founder of the independent label Hydeout Productions and released two collection compilations: Hydeout Productions 1st Collection (2003) and 2nd Collection (2007).[1] Additionally, Seba collaborated on the soundtrack for Shinichirō Watanabe's anime series Samurai Champloo (Music Record: Departure and Impression) in 2004.

In 2010, Seba died in a traffic collision at the age of 36.[2] Although relatively niche during his lifetime, Seba has since achieved posthumous acclaim and been referred as the "godfather" of lo-fi hip hop. Seba's production techniques and career have also been compared favorably with J Dilla, who was born on the same day.[3]



Seba was born on February 7, 1974, in the Nishi-Azabu district of Minato in central Tokyo, Japan. In adulthood, Seba owned a record store in Shibuya, and also founded the independent record label Hydeout Productions.[4]



Seba adopted the stage name Nujabes (his name spelled backwards) and became notable for his approach to producing hip hop beats, often blending jazz influences into his songs creating a mellow, nostalgic and atmospheric sound. He is considered a pioneer of lo-fi hip hop, or "chillhop".[5] Seba collaborated with Japanese artists like Uyama Hiroto, Shing02, L-Universe, and Minmi, and with various underground American hip hop acts such as CYNE, Cise Starr (as a solo apart from the hip-hop collective CYNE), Apani B, Five Deez, Substantial, CL Smooth, Fat Jon, Terry Callier as well as British rapper Funky DL. Seba was also a member of the production duo Urbanforest, an experimental collaboration with Nao T.[6] Seba collaborated with Shing02 on the critically acclaimed Luv(sic) hexalogy, making the parts 1-3 together, but after Seba died unexpectedly many doubted that the series could ever be completed. However, parts 4 and 5 had already been completed, which were released shortly after Seba's death. Part 6 was not among the previously completed tracks, but it was released on February 26, 2013, on the third anniversary of Seba's death. According to Shing02's official Facebook page, the instrumental to what would eventually be part 6 was discovered on Seba's cell phone a few weeks after his death.[7]

Seba was one of the most prolific contributors to the soundtrack of the critically acclaimed anime series Samurai Champloo, which blends a feudal Japanese setting with modern anachronisms, especially in regard to hip hop culture such as graffiti and rapping.[8]

Death and legacy


On February 26, 2010, Seba was involved in a traffic collision when he was leaving the Shuto Expressway in Tokyo: he was taken to a hospital in Shibuya Ward, where he was pronounced dead after efforts to revive him were unsuccessful.[9][10] Seba was buried in Tama Cemetery, Tokyo.

Legacy and influence


After his death, frequent collaborator Shing02 paid tribute to Seba, saying he was "a unique talent", "a close friend", and that "he [had] touched so many people around the world, even beyond his dreams".[11] He has since performed at several tribute concerts for Seba, including at the anime convention Otakon in 2019, along with artists such as musician Minmi and rapper Substantial.[12]

On November 11, 2010, his label released a tribute compilation album, Modal Soul Classics II, featuring previous collaborators and covers and remixes of his songs.[13] Several other tribute albums and songs have been released: the 2013 tribute album 25 Nights for Nujabes by Australian hip-hop producer Ta-ku;[14] "Kwiaty dla J", a 2018 tribute song by Polish rapper Zeus;[15] and the track "Nujabes" from American rapper Chester Watson's 2020 album, A Japanese Horror Film.[16]

Seba has been mentioned in two songs by American rapper Logic: in the track "Thank You" from his 2018 album YSIV, which was written "over a Nujabes vibe",[17] and in "Perfect" from his 2020 album No Pressure, where Seba was cited as a major inspiration in his production style.[18] Seba was also mentioned by American rapper SahBabii in his 2018 song "Anime World", with the rapper stating in an interview that he admired Seba's music.[19]

Seba's track "Counting Stars" featured in the 2022 adventure video game Stray as part of collectible sheet music pages.

Hydeout Productions

Hydeout Productions
Country of originJapan
Official websitehydeout.net

Hydeout Productions is an independent record label formerly run by Seba.


  • Nujabes (deceased)
  • Emancipator
  • Kenmochi Hidefumi
  • Ficus (Cloud Ni9e, Kic. & HISANOVA)
  • Nitsua (Zack Austin)
  • Feng (FK)
  • Funky DL
  • L-Universe
  • Marcus D
  • Pase Rock
  • haruka nakamura
  • Shing02
  • Jemapur
  • Substantial
  • Cise Starr
  • Monorisick (DJ Deckstream) (deceased)
  • Apani B



Studio albums


Compilation albums


Soundtrack albums


EPs and singles

  • Ain't No Mystery (1999)
  • "Dimension Ball Tracks Volume 1" (2001)
  • Luv(sic) Part 1 - Part 6 (2002–2013)
  • "Blessing It/The Final View" (2002)
  • "Flower/After Hanabi (Listen To My Beat") (2003)
  • "Next View" (2003)
  • "Lady Brown" (2003)
  • "F.I.L.O" (2003)
  • "Still Talking To You/Steadfast" (2003)
  • Perfect Circle (with Shing02) (2015)

Collaborative albums

  • To This Union a Sun Was Born (with Substantial) (2001)
  • Bullshit as Usual (with Pase Rock) (2003)

Official mixtapes

  • Sweet Sticky Thing (1999)
  • Good Music Cuisine - Ristorante Nujabes (2002)
  • Tribe Sampler Vol. 1 (2003)

Hydeout Productions discography



  1. ^ "Nujabes, Spiritual State". Sputnikmusic. December 6, 2011. Retrieved June 14, 2020.
  2. ^ Hadfield, James (February 24, 2015). "Nujabes' friends to pay tribute to the soulful hip-hop producer on the fifth anniversary of his death". The Japan Times. Retrieved June 14, 2020.
  3. ^ Lane, Patrick (February 7, 2012). "A Tribute to J Dilla and Nujabes". The Word Is Bond. Retrieved April 24, 2022.
  4. ^ Reevestitle=How Shing02 and Nujabes Linked West Coast and Japanese Hip-Hop, Mosi (March 28, 2020). "How Shing02 and Nujabes Linked West Coast and Japanese Hip-Hop". KQED. Retrieved January 16, 2023.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: numeric names: authors list (link)
  5. ^ Dayman, Lucy (September 10, 2018). "Nujabes: The Japanese Icon Who Shaped the Future of Hip Hop". Culture Trip.
  6. ^ "Hydeout Productions Information on Nujabes' Metaphorical Music and other works". Hydeout Productions (in Japanese). Archived from the original on 2015-09-24. Retrieved 2010-03-19.
  7. ^ Shing02 (April 2, 2012). "History and future of Luv(sic) series". Shing02's official Facebook page. Archived from the original on 2020-06-14. Retrieved June 14, 2020.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: numeric names: authors list (link)
  8. ^ Watanabe, Shinichiro; Kazuto, Nakazawa (March 13, 2007). Roman Album: Samurai Champloo. Dark Horse Comics Inc. p. 55. ISBN 978-1-59307-642-9.
  9. ^ "Japanese Hip-Hop producer Nujabes dies". Inquisitir. March 18, 2010.
  10. ^ "News: Nujabes died in fatal car accident". The Find Mag. March 18, 2010.
  11. ^ "Jun Seba aka Nujabes, Rest In Peace". e22.com. March 17, 2010.
  12. ^ "Otakon 2019 Tribute to Nujabes Concert". Facebook.
  13. ^ "Tribute To Jun 5 : Midnight Hanabi (Nujabes Tribute), by Various Artists". Digi Crates Records. Archived from the original on 2021-04-28. Retrieved 2015-02-24.
  14. ^ "25 Nights For Nujabes". SoundCloud.
  15. ^ "ZEUS - Kwiaty dla J." YouTube (in Polish). Archived from the original on 2021-12-22.
  16. ^ Raw, Son (30 October 2020). "A Japanese Horror Film, Directed by Chester Watson". Passion of the Weiss.
  17. ^ "Thank You (feat. Lucy Rose & The RattPack) by Logic". SoundCloud. September 28, 2018.
  18. ^ "Perfect by Logic". SoundCloud. July 24, 2020.
  19. ^ Kids Take Over (December 29, 2018). "1on1: Sahbabii on Still Recording in Bedroom, Getting Fired, and Yu Gi Oh Cards (Interview)". YouTube. Retrieved March 9, 2022.