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Old 07-16-2017, 10:59 PM   #1
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Kageyama Shota

You all know of Masuda Jun'ichi, the musician-turned-director who has been with Pokémon from the very beginning. Masuda's musical contributions to the franchise include such classic melodies as "Pallet Town Theme", "Celadon City Theme", and the Pokémon Center theme.

And you know of Ichinose Gō, Masuda's musical heir, the man whom Masuda brought in in Generation II to help score so much of Pokémon Gold and Silver. Ichinose has given us such timeless classics as "Goldenrod City", "Opelucid City (Pokémon White)", and -- my personal favorite contribution of his -- the ending theme song to Pokémon Ruby and Pokémon Sapphire.

I discovered tonight the existence of a third man -- Kageyama Shota -- and his contributions to the library of Pokémon music.

Kageyama Shota is no longer employed at Game Freak. He joined during Generation IV, and during his time with the company worked on songs featured in HGSS, BW, BW2, and XY. While he left the company in early 2014, he continued to work alongside them as a freelance contributor and composed many songs used in Pokémon Omega Ruby and Alpha Sapphire.

But I think that Kageyama's name deserves to be recognized. I feel like this man is hardly ever talked about, while we all know the names "Junichi Masuda" and "Go Ichinose". And why do I say this? Because ...

Kageyama Shota composed the following songs:So many of the most talked about or most beloved songs to come out of the last three generations came from this man. In fact, about the only song not on this list is the Opelucid City theme song, and that's because it was Ichinose Gō's composition, not Kageyama Shota's. But Kageyama has so much to be proud of here. An Unwavering Heart? Laverre City? The Lament of Falling Stars!?

Of all the songs he's written, I think I'd have to say my No.1 favorite is "Soaring Dreams", the song that plays when you first (and subsequently) take [email protected] out for a spin in Pokémon Omega Ruby and Alpha Sapphire. The song is so perfectly written to match the wonder and amazement of soaring over the Hoenn region atop your new friend, you can't help but to love it. A wonderful melody in its own right, "Soaring Dreams" is the sort of song that makes you want to go soaring, just so you can hear the song again; it's the sort of song that keeps you from advancing with your playthrough of the game, because you just want to keep on soaring around aimlessly so you can enjoy the grandness of the sights and sounds before you.

I can't believe Game Freak let this one get away. According to Bulbapedia, Kageyama and the company remain on good terms. But his complete absence from Sun and Moon is saddening.

The musical contributions to our latest main series games appear to have come mostly from (in order from most to least) Adachi Minako, Satou Hitomi, and the legends themselves Masuda Jun'ichi and Ichinose Gou. Adachi has been with the company since Generation V, with Sun and Moon appearing to be her first "I am the captain now " opportunity to show the world what she's got when she's in the driver's seat. Lots and lots of the main city themes and route themes are hers. Satou Hitomi appears to have been Adachi's partner in crime ;3 for Sun and Moon, rounding out a lot of the rest of the region. Ichinose gave us many of the battle themes, it looks like, as well as Professor Kukui's theme, the theme music for the Ultra Space, and the memorable track "Lonely Lillie" which just oozes his Ichinose feel. And as for Masuda, it looks like this might have been his biggest outing as a musician in several generations. I see lots and lot of minor songs written by the guy, ranging from item acquisition jingles to the song that plays when a Totem Pokémon appears. A lot of his stuff is re-workings of older, classic melodies he's contributed, but still!

So like ... I like these guys. All of them! (Yes, Junichi. I even like you when we're talking music. Even if you are a butt who won't let me have my MMO ...) But like ... I am sad that they let Kageyama leave! ^^; Because Kageyama's contributions include my very top songs out of the franchise for the last ten years.

So let's hear it for Kageyama Shota! Good luck to you, sir, with all of your future endeavors. And thanks very much, from the bottom of our hearts, for giving us some songs that we shall truly cherish for years to come.
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