August 6, 1972 |
|Residence||Miami, United States|
|Spouse(s)||Bridgette (m. 2005–09)
Bonnie Minkus (m. 1996–2003)
Yoji was born in Tokyo, Japan before moving to Chicago where he met and married his first wife Bonnie Minkus. In 1998 he moved to New York City, New York in order to pursue his dream of being a professional musician. He started hearing The Clash on the radio as his motivation and whereas he was progressing with making music in Japan, his dream was to be a success in the United States. Upon arriving in New York he joined a punk rock band called 'Big Deal' which lasted for several years before his relocation to Miami, Florida to tattoo for Ami James. Yoji stated that he worked for Ami for 5 years before requesting the role of apprentice upon his girlfriend Bridgette becoming pregnant. He said, “One night I found out my girlfriend (current wife) was pregnant. I had to start making some real money, you know, so I asked Ami James if I could apprentice and he said yes".
Working at Love-Hate Tattoos under Ami James, the television show Miami Ink spawned and thrust Yoji into the public eye leading to huge fame in his native Japan. The show chronicled Yoji's progression from apprentice to official tattooist, as well as his marriage to Bridgette and the birth of his daughter Sydney (born 2005). The success of the show allowed Yoji to return to his real passion and regroup with his band 'Big Deal'.
Yoji made a brief cameo in the Japanese thriller Suicide Club as a comedian whose partner commits suicide on stage.
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