The scandal of Japanese composer Mamoru Samuragochi isn’t over yet; a man has stepped forward claiming to be the musician’s ghost writer, alleging Samaragochi does not suffer a hearing impairment.
The ABC reports part-time music school teacher Takashi Niigaki gave a lengthy, live press conference on Japanese TV yesterday, during which he claims to have been writing works credited to Samaragochi for 18 years.
Describing himself as an accomplice to the deception, Niigaki said that Samuragochi can hear perfectly well, and cannot even write sheet music – explaining in a less sympathy-inducing fashion why he requires the services of a ghost writer.
“I’ve never felt he was deaf ever since we met,” Niigaki said. “We carry on normal conversations. I don’t think he is.
“At first he acted to me also as if he had suffered hearing loss, but he stopped doing so eventually. He told me, after the music for the video games was unveiled, that he would continue to play the role.”
Niigaki said he came forward after he learned that a Japanese figure skater would perform to one his compositions at the Sochi Winter Olympics. He claims to have been paid ¥7 million yen ($77,000) for the more than 20 pieces he composed on Samuragochi’s behalf.
“I told him a few times that we should stop doing this, but he never gave in. Also he said he would commit suicide if I stop composing for him,” Niigaki said.
Yesterday, we learned that Samarugochi has been utilising the services of a ghost writer for almost two decades, apparently as a result of diminished hearing capacity. Although the main ideas of the music were his own, Samarugochi didn’t develop the full scores himself, he confessed.
The composer apologised for the deception via lawyer’s statement, saying he went public with the revelation following the airing of an NHK documentary – although notably also after an interview with Niigaki was published.
Samarugochi’s credits include the 1998 Dual Shock Ver. re-release of Resident Evil and Onimusha: Warlords, as well as the film Cosmos. In musical circles he is perhaps best known for his 2003 composition No. 1 symphony Hiroshima.