Tetsuya Shibata

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Tetsuya Shibata
Born (1973-10-24) October 24, 1973 (age 44)
Osaka, Japan
Genres Jazz, classical, rock
Occupation(s) Composer
Instruments Piano, guitar, bass
Years active 1997–present
Labels Suleputer
Unique Note
Associated acts Yoshino Aoki

Tetsuya Shibata (柴田徹也, Shibata Tetsuya, born October 24, 1973) is a Japanese video game music composer and sound director. He is credited for over twenty musical scores produced for Capcom's video game releases including the Monster Hunter and Devil May Cry series, as well those in the Darkstalkers, Power Stone and Resident Evil Outbreak series. His later works with the company involved organizing orchestral recordings for Resident Evil 5 and Monster Hunter Tri. In 2009, Shibata left Capcom and began his own music studio, known as Unique Note, with colleague Yoshino Aoki.


Early life[edit]

Tetsuya Shibata was born October 24, 1973 in Osaka, Japan. While growing up, his mother was a singer and a music teacher.[1] Shibata began playing classical piano at a very young age. He taught himself how to play guitar, bass guitar, and drums while in junior high school and high school.[2] Shibata completed a law degree from Kansai University in 1996.[3] While at the university, he heavily studied classic, rock, and jazz genres outside of his major. He eventually bought a synthesizer to compose his own music.[2][4]


With a high interest in starting a career in the musical field, Shibata began applying for jobs in composition after college. Friends of some of his relatives introduced him to the video game industry.[5] Shibata joined Capcom's Sound Management Section in 1997, where he took on various roles such as manager, director, producer, and composer for over twenty different games in a twelve-year span.[6] His earliest works were many fighting games such as the Darkstalkers and Power Stone series.[4] Among other titles, Shibata, alongside Mitsuhiko Takano and frequent collaborator Masato Kouda, created the score for the first game in Capcom's successful Monster Hunter series. Notably, Shibata composed music for the second, third, and fourth installments in Capcom's highly regarded Devil May Cry series. In later releases he chose to replace electronic music with vocal songs in the games' various battle and ending themes to make the music more recognizable for each game. One of these pieces, "Out of Darkness" from Devil May Cry 4, was nominated for a Game Audio Network Guild (G.A.N.G.) Award in 2009.[4][5][7] He proclaimed that his favorite project so far has been Devil May Cry 3: Dante's Awakening, on which he did all the sound production. He also personally found this to be the most challenging project in his career.[1] Shibata's role in the soundtrack production of 2006's Dead Rising involved bringing in licensed music alongside Capcom's in-house compositions.[4]

In late 2008 and early 2009, Shibata worked as senior sound director on two major releases. For Resident Evil 5, he organizined recordings by the Hollywood Studio Symphony, and did the same for Monster Hunter Tri with the FILMharmonic Orchestra in Prague.[2][4][8] In addition, he produced the Monster Hunter Orchestra Concert, a concert celebrating the fifth anniversary of the Monster Hunter franchise. Some of his compositions from the original Monster Hunter were performed.[9] This would be his last role at Capcom, as he states that he left the company because he wanted to create music for a wide range of companies and genres, including those outside of video games.[4] Torn between his responsibilities as a manager and his desire to compose music more freely, he was reluctant to leave the game developer because he had many ongoing projects at the time. His superior informed him that Capcom would not argue with his decision.[6]

In May 2009, he founded and became the president of his own music company known as Unique Note.[3] The company aspires to create music for several types of media like television, commercials, films, and film trailers, as well as video games.[6] Shibata himself plays guitar, bass guitar, and keyboard for his own compositions.[4] Early in the company's establishment, Shibata was joined by another former Capcom composer, Yoshino Aoki, who is now the group's vice president as well as a composer, arranger, and lyricist.[6] Shibata had previously worked with Aoki on several projects at Capcom. He had gained respect for her musical talent over the years, especially for her score of Breath of Fire IV which he experienced while he was putting together the Breath of Fire Original Soundtrack Special Box in 2006.[4][6] So far Unique Note has worked on musical scores for Fullmetal Alchemist: Senka wo Takuseshi Mono and Half-Minute Hero for the PlayStation Portable, as well as two musicals.[4][10]

Musical style and influences[edit]

Shibata lists musical influences from many different genres before joining Capcom. As a child, he was exposed to the classical styles of Frédéric Chopin and Franz Schubert. In middle school he listened to Britpop bands Kajagoogoo and Boy George. In high school, he became interested in rock bands such as Aerosmith, Guns N' Roses, and Led Zeppelin. By college, he began listening to the jazz stylings of Oscar Peterson, Makoto Ozone, Chick Corea, and Baptiste Trotignon.[1]



Sound director/producer[edit]

Other works[edit]


  1. ^ a b c "In The Studio with CAPCOM Sound and Music Director / Composer Tetsuya Shibata". Music4Games. July 21, 2008. Archived from the original on 2008-08-22. Retrieved 2009-11-16. 
  2. ^ a b c "Interview with Resident Evil 5 Music Team - Kota Suzuki, Tetsuya Shibata and Wataru Hokoyama". Music4Games. August 20, 2008. Archived from the original on 2008-07-31. Retrieved 2009-11-16. 
  3. ^ a b Shibata, Tetsuya. "Tetsuya Shibata - LinkedIn". LinkedIn. Retrieved 2009-10-12. 
  4. ^ a b c d e f g h i Chris (October 2009). "Interview with Tetsuya Shibata". Square Enix Music Online. Retrieved 2009-11-16. 
  5. ^ a b Napolitano, Jayson (March 29, 2009). "GDC 2009: Interview With Capcom Sound Director Tetsuya Shibata". Original Sound Version. Retrieved 2009-11-16. 
  6. ^ a b c d e Napolitano, Jayson (June 25, 2009). "Meet Unique Note: Interview With Tetsuya Shibata and Yoshino Aoki". Original Sound Version. Retrieved 2009-11-16. 
  7. ^ Alexander, Leigh (February 17, 2009). "LittleBigPlanet Scores Big With G.A.N.G. Award Noms". Gamasutra. Retrieved 2009-11-16. 
  8. ^ Chris (September 4, 2008). "Monster Hunter 3: Cut up Wyverns and Listen to Great Orchestral Music in 2009". Original Sound Version. Retrieved 2009-11-16. 
  9. ^ Jariaska (May 9, 2009). "Monster Hunter Orchestral - 5th Anniversary Concert Report". Capcom Unity. Retrieved 2009-11-16. 
  10. ^ Napolitano, Jayson (April 1, 2010). "GDC 2010: A Unique Interview With Unique Note". Original Sound Version. Retrieved 2010-11-27. 
  11. ^ Napolitano, Jayson (February 24, 2011). "OSV Exclusive: Otomedius X Artist List Revealed". Original Sound Version. Retrieved 2011-11-29. 

External links[edit]