|Also known as||Davy|
December 24, 1958|
Nara, Nara, Japan
|Died||November 30, 2008
|Genres||Rock, heavy metal|
|Occupation(s)||Drummer, record producer|
|Associated acts||Lazy, Loudness, Sly|
Munetaka Higuchi (樋口 宗孝 Higuchi Munetaka?) (December 24, 1958 – November 30, 2008) was a Japanese musician and record producer, best known for being the original drummer of the heavy metal band, Loudness.
From a young age, he was considered a talented drummer. During his high school years, Higuchi played in seven bands. But he was not happy with this situation, wanting to focus his time on only one band. That's when schoolmate and future bandmate Akira Takasaki came along and they formed Lazy. Lazy was formed by very young musicians and started playing easy-listening pop-rock, that slowly progressed to more complex music. Higuchi was identified in the band by the moniker "Davy".
When he and Takasaki shifted their musical interests to hard rock and heavy metal, they founded Loudness in 1981. During his time with Loudness, Higuchi released his first solo album, Destruction, in 1983. In the same year he produced and played drums in Mari Hamada's studio albums Lunatic Doll and Romantic Night. He left Loudness in 1992, and resumed his solo career in the late-1990s, working also on side projects, including Sly (with former Loudness' singer Minoru Niihara), Bloodcircus, Rose of Rose, and the Rock 'n' Roll Standard Club Band, besides collaborating with dozens of Japanese artists, both as producer and as drummer.
In 1997, as "Munetaka Higuchi & Dream Castle", he released the album Free World. The band featured many famous musicians from the jazz and rock/metal spheres, like Steve Vai, Stanley Clarke, Billy Sheehan, Ty Tabor, Terry Bozzio, T. M. Stevens, Ronnie James Dio, Richie Kotzen, Paulinho Da Costa and others. The album was released on February 21, 1997 in Japan. In 1998, he produced Cozy Powell Forever ~ Tribute to Cozy Powell, a tribute album to the recently deceased drummer Cozy Powell, very popular in Japan. For the album, Higuchi had the collaboration of the best Japanese heavy metal musicians and was able to reunite his former bandmates of Loudness. A tour in support of the album was made with musicians from Loudness and Sly.
He returned to Loudness in 2000, maintaining his high profile in the metal genre.
On April 14, 2008, just two months after Loudness released the album, Metal Mad, it was announced that he was diagnosed with hepatocellular carcinoma, a type of liver cancer. On November 30, 2008, Munetaka died at the age of 49 in a hospital in Osaka, Japan. His death had a vast echo in Japanese media and in the entertainment biz.
- Destruction ~破壊凱旋録~（12/10/1983）
- Munetaka Higuchi with Dream Castle - Free World （02/21/1997）
- Cozy Powell Forever (09/1998)
- Super Rock Summit - Cozy Powell Forever Tour (01/1999)
- Super Rock Summit - Stairway to Heaven (03/1999)
- Super Rock Summit - Rainbow Eyes (06/1999)
- Munetaka Higuchi Drum Collection (08/23/2006）
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- Siegler, Joe (1999-01-27). "Cozy Powell Tribute Albums". The Official Cozy Powell Site. Archived from the original on 2000-03-04. Retrieved 2010-11-21.
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- ＬＯＵＤＮＥＳＳリーダーが肝細胞がん. Sponichi Annex (in Japanese). Sports Nippon Newspapers. 2008-04-15. Retrieved 2010-03-24.
- "LOUDNESS Drummer MUNETAKA HIGUCHI Dead At 49". Blabbermouth.net. Roadrunner Records. 30 November 2008. Retrieved 2012-06-02.
- "LOUDNESS、樋口宗孝、海外でも惜しまれる" (in Japanese). WeRockCity.com. 2008-12-05. Retrieved 2010-03-24.