We Love DiGiMONMUSiC Memorial Booklet comments (A-I)

A translation of the “100 Comments” left by voice actors and staff members for animation and music production from Digimon Adventure, Adventure 02, Tamers, and Frontier, which were included in a booklet from the DiGiMONMUSiC 100 Title Commemoration Release: We Love DiGiMONMUSiC (デジモンミュージック100タイトル記念作品 We Love DiGiMONMUSIC) album collection, originally released December 25, 2002. This also includes both versions of the addendum comment left by music producer Shintarou Matsui in both the original version and the December 25, 2013 rerelease.

With the exception of Producer Matsui’s comments, the original booklets organized all of the commenters by name in gojuuon order. For the sake of easier reading for English speakers, I’ve reorganized the comments in English alphabetical order by surname (or, in the case of pseudonyms without surnames, by pseudonym), and have split the list into portions.

Note that some names have never had official readings provided, so in such cases I made my best guess at how their names are read.

(A-I | K-M | N-S | T-W | Shintarou Matsui’s comments)

AiM (music artist; Aoni Production)

I think it’s amazing for a single series to be able to put out 100 CDs.
This was only possible because all of you listened to them.
Truly, thank you very much.
I myself got to encounter so many songs through the past four years.
From “I wish” to “an Endless tale”, each and every one of them has their own colors.
In particular, back during “I wish”, when I still wasn’t used to the recording process, I feel like I didn’t have any idea what I was doing, I was just throwing everything I had at it without stopping.
And then “keep on” was my first time on the Oricon1 rankings at #39! And then I changed my artist name to AiM for “Opus No. 2, “Spring” in A major ~Our War Game!~” and “Tomorrow My Wind Will Blow”, and then I got to write lyrics for “Moving on!”, and then I got to sing a different version of Ruki-chan’s song “Sunset Promise”, and then I got to duet with Kouji Wada-san for “an Endless tale”, and I also got to sing with Michihiko Ohta-san…all of these little things gathered together make a huge pile of everything, and if you asked me which of my songs so far were my favorite, I wouldn’t be able to give you a clear answer.
I’m attached to every single one of them, and I’m sure everyone listening to them has their own favorites, so I hope you can all treasure them in your deepest heart of hearts.
They’re songs from something that you’ll always find with you if you look for it, from all the way back when you were a child. That’s the kind of thing Digimon is.
Whenever I feel hurt, or sad, or like I’ve lost sight of something, it’s always with me, supporting me.
Director Chiba-san told me “that’s because music will never betray you,” and I really had to agree, so I’m very glad he told me that.
Music still continues to support me to this day, so I have no intention of betraying it either.
So if I can keep singing these songs that are so full of precious feelings and overflowing love, nothing could make me happier.
Now that Digimon has been in my life and I’ve been able to share these songs with so many people, I wonder how much of my love has reached them?
I can tell you that all of the love from the series itself, and all of the staff who have been supporting me, and of course from everyone else too, has reached me.
I’m truly thankful.
I’m going to keep doing my best to keep my songs going, for me and for everyone.
I hope my songs can support everyone’s hearts, even just a little.
Thank you very much.

Masato Amada (voice of Junpei Shibayama; Ken Production)

When I first heard Junpei’s theme song “Spark!!”, I still hadn’t recorded Blitzmon’s evolution for the main series yet.
I myself still didn’t have a grasp of Junpei’s character yet, so I was nervous, and I was terribly nervous during the recording for the song, too.
At the time, within the series itself, Junpei was a very negative sort of guy who didn’t seem to want to do anything.
He’d come to this unknown world called the Digital World, started going on an adventure with a bunch of strangers, and was frustrated at being the only one who couldn’t evolve.
Thinking back on it now, I feel like Junpei’s confusion and distress matched up with my own in how I barely had any experience with the series yet.
Fortunately, the song was supposed to be set after Blitzmon’s first evolution in episode 5.
Now that Junpei had succeeded in his first evolution, I made him all lively and excitable (of course, in his own Junpei-like way).
That episode helped me get a bit of a better grasp of my role, so thanks to this, Junpei himself ended up supporting me a lot.
If I hadn’t played him in that episode, the song would have probably felt very different.
So this and that happened, and the recording for “Spark!!” was postponed considerably from its original schedule, and we finally finished.
Somehow, we ended up finishing the recording in only twenty minutes, so fast that it threw me off.
Director Chiba-san said “I want to preserve that pierce in Junpei’s passion” and we ended up doing it all in nearly one take, and we were going to release that to the world…I was really nervous.
But in the end, I think we were really able to show off Junpei’s (my?) strong energy to the world.
Right now, Junpei-kun’s come to understand the meaning of teamwork, and he’s been wanting to sing in a chorus with the rest of the Frontier team, but will he ever get to sing with the entire Digimon cast someday? Huh? It’d be too hard to arrange all the parts? Y-Yeah, you’re right…(sweats)

Touko Aoyama (voice of Kenta Kitagawa; Office Kaoru)

100 Digimon CDs!! Congratulations!
Digimon was my first time working on a TV anime.
I still clearly remember how moved I was to see Kenta actually walking around on screen.
They made more and more music as the episodes kept going, and when I heard Takato, Jian, and Ruki’s song “3 Primary Colors” on the TV, I was really moved, and I also thought “must be nice…”
…But I figured Kenta probably wouldn’t be singing.
And then! Surprisingly, it turned out he’d be singing “Manly Flying Spit”!
I tried to imagine what kind of song it’d be?! And then it turned out to be enka!!2
It was a duet with Hirokazu!!
Digimon was going to give me my first singing performance…!
I remember having so much fun during the recording!
And then, even more surprisingly, they told me I’d be singing “My Own Blue Card”, and I was so happy, and also really moved again.
All of Kenta’s feelings that weren’t clear in the TV show were fully expressed there…!
I was so, so happy.
For me, DiGiMONMUSiC deeply moves me in so many ways that I can’t even count.
Thank you so much!

Kae Araki (voice of Hikari Yagami, Patamon)

My best memories of DiGiMONMUSiC are of the Best Partner series.
Firstly, there’s “Shining Star”, which is Hikari and Tailmon’s way of cheering people on with a song.
It’s not so much a bright and energetic song as much as it’s full of determination in their hearts and a feeling of support to keep moving forward, so it’s very much like them.
Also, the director told us “it’s like a wink (from the singer)!!”, and I thought that was really funny.
After that is “Gentle Rain”, and at the time Hikari was desperately doing her best in spite of her weakness, and yet wanted others to watch over her. I could really sense those feelings from it, so I sang it with a heartrending feeling.
My personal favorite piece of DiGiMONMUSiC is Digimon Adventure 02 Christmas Fantasy, and I especially love “Daisuke and Ken’s Shopping Carol”.
I break out in a huge smile every time I hear it.
In particular, I completely lose it when they go “baby, it’s Christmas!”
They’re very cool.
It makes me feel so happy, I listen to it over and over again.
When I was practicing myself for the recording for this one, I could really feel the presence of all of the characters from both Digimon Adventure series.
I felt as if the Hikari within me was also very happy, so I went to the recording with very warm feelings.

Takanori Arisawa (composer; Arithm)

I already thought it was enough of an achievement that Digimon had reached its fourth series this year…and then I learned it put out 100 music CDs too.
That’s really amazing!
I’ve been involved in composing music for all of the TV series and the spring and summer movies, aligning them to the characters and scenes, and counting everything from the long ones with tons of instruments to the short ones with only a single guitar, I’ve probably made more than 400 pieces of BGM over the last four years.
For each series and movie, in accordance with the story and themes, I used all sorts of concepts, ranging from full orchestra classical to jazz quartets to Western to Latin to Middle Eastern, but the one I have the strongest memory of is the song “Requiem” from Digimon Adventure: Our War Game!
The director requested that I make a song that would invoke the feeling of the story about saving the world, with a classical song like Bach’s Mass or Fauré’s Requiem.
I’d already used Ravel for the first theatrical movie, so I wanted to make a song that sounded like Ravel’s mentor Fauré.
But would it really be possible for me to make a song like that in a studio?
To do this, I would absolutely need some beautiful chorals and a young boy’s soprano solo.
To address this, I was able to get a wonderful internationally acclaimed chorus to help.
A young boy’s pure and clear voice singing the Latin words “Pie Jesu” from the Requiem Mass rang out through the entire studio, and I will never forget that moment.
And with that, I was able to complete my own “Requiem” for the Digimon.
I’d like to continue supporting the Digimon and their Tamers in whatever they’ll be doing from here on out, and to evolve little by little myself.

Youko Asada (voice of Juri Katou; 81 Produce)

Happy 100 releases!
The character I played, Juri-chan, had quite a few sad songs, and it was actually when I was recording for them when I learned for the first time that her partner Leomon would end up dying later in the story, and I remember it being a huge shock for me.
She’d finally found someone she could rely on, and I was thinking “so then what is Juri-chan gonna do now!?”, and I put all of the feelings I had in my heart into the song.
In particular, I remember thinking that her duet with Leomon really reminded me of a sad scene from a musical, like something from the Shiki Theatre Company3.
A lot of really harsh things ended up happening to her, but she was so precious and sweet, with “the brightness of refusing to give in”.
Personally, I have an attachment to how the song I sang for Digimon Girls Festival, “The Color of Someday”, has a mysterious sense to it.
But in the end, I really do love the main series’ opening song, “The Biggest Dreamer”.
It’s so irresistible, it gets your heart pounding, like an adventure’s about to begin.
I hope the Digimon series can keep on going forever and ever with this kind of exciting feeling!!

Atsunari Baba (assistant producer; Toei Animation)

I have so many memories when it comes to DiGiMONMUSiC.
Congratulations on finally reaching 100 CDs!
I started getting involved in the series somewhere around halfway into Digimon Adventure 02.
We had insert songs used as staple pieces for the series and put them out in CDs one after another, but we didn’t just use them as simple insert songs, but we had a specific song for Armor Evolution and a specific song for Jogress Evolution, so you could tell what kind of evolution it’d be just by hearing the intro.
I thought it was such a refreshing and wonderful way to make the series!
The first time I was appointed as a primary producer was for the theatrical movie Digimon Tamers: Runaway Digimon Express, and we went through so many difficulties and demo tapes trying to make sure the insert songs and ending song fit the movie exactly the way we needed them to, so I really can’t be thankful enough.
After that, for the theatrical movie Digimon Frontier: Revival of the Ancient Digimon!!, the BGM had such a wonderful orchestra, and the music was wonderful enough that it could attract any viewer by itself!
So I hope that as long as Digimon keeps going (at this rate, in whatever form it ends up having to take…), I hope it can keep building up such an abundant pile of music!

Susumu Chiba (voice of Mitsuo Yamaki; Office Osawa)

Firstly, I’d like to give my congratulations for the 100 releases.
Then, I’d like to give my thanks to everyone who bought the CDs.
I got to participate in the Christmas songs, which was for an album made so that the Digimon and kids could sing gently, warmly, and cheerfully for the kids who were watching.
But within all that, my song “Black X-mas ~Yamaki’s Theme” was more full of an atmosphere for adults, a song that seemed completely and utterly unsuited to be a Christmas song, and at first I was really worried about whether this would be okay (laughs).
But I think that gap in expectations turned out for the better.
The stiffness in that song was able to make it amusing and unique in its own way.
It was very popular among the staff, and most of all, I’m personally very satisfied with it.

Akihiko Fujita (sound producer; Toei Animation Music Publishing)

I remember that the establishment of Toei Animation Music Publishing, as well as my involvement with Digimon staff, was sometime around the Tamers summer theatrical movie, The Adventurers’ Battle, and the number of CDs around that time was maybe something like 58, or maybe 64, or maybe 73…I want to say something like that, but it was basically a number that makes you feel how much of a big deal that 100 figure is now.
I’d already thought the other series I was working on, M*g*c** Do**Mi4, had an amazing number of CDs, but that wasn’t even close, was it? (Incidentally, that series has something around 40 fewer…I think?)
But not only are there this many CDs, they’ve even made this kind of CD to commemorate this anniversary! That’s not the kind of thing you can just come up with out of nowhere and have it be done like that, it’s totally the kind of thing you’d come up with, get excited over at the bar with drinks and then forget about it, but for the CD staff to actually pull through has to require so much spirit, or maybe guts, or maybe passion, or spare energy, or whatever it is, and I have to admire them for that…and as I’m writing this I’m probably gonna get yelled at, “you’re staff too, aren’t you?!”
So instead of thinking about such crude things like “what kind of CDs are they going to put out next…???”, I’d like to celebrate the remarkable achievement of 100 CDs by taking as much time as I can to listen through all of these CDs in order, series by series, taking a journey through these last four years of DiGiMONMUSiC.
Now let’s aim for 200 releases!!

Toshiko Fujita (voice of Taichi Yagami; Aoni Production)

Having played Taichi for two years, I’ve sang a lot of songs, but the one with the deepest mark on my heart has got to be the song we all sang together, “Our Digital World”.
Because the day we recorded that, the studio was brimming with all of our passion!!
It was like we were all enjoying ourselves on a tour group together, and we were all breathing together in unison as we sang!
It was a wonderful time when all of our hearts came together.
Even now, remembering that day again, I can feel warmth in my heart, and everyone’s faces come to mind.
I’m really glad I could get another taste of those deep emotions again through this project.
And from the bottom of my heart, I’m grateful to everyone who’s been supporting Digimon Adventure all this time.
Thank you!!

Goh Haruna (TV producer; Fuji TV)

How deeply moving it is to achieve 100 releases!
Looking back, the last four years since Digimon got off the ground have gone by so fast.
It’s become the biggest series in this turn of the centry.
Through all of this, the kids have gone through and done so much in the Digital World, and learned so much about the amazing power of friendship and the importance of not giving into yourself.
And thanks to this music spanning over 100 releases, the kids’ range of emotions has been enhanced even more clearly and brightly.
In the end, I’m sure they were able to leave feelings of strength and invigoration in all of our audience members as well.
In ten or twenty years, when the kids who grew up watching Digimon hear this music again, I hope those feelings will awaken in them once again, wherever they are.
Incidentally, my personal favorite line from all of the music so far is that line “brimming with the unknown~” from “FIRE!!”
It’s something I never want to forget, no matter how much time passes.

Hassy (music artist)

I didn’t know a thing about the world of anime, but they suddenly requested me to do a Digimon insert song, and it was a completely unexpected world for me.
It was like, “huh!? You sure you want me?!”
I didn’t want to crush everyone’s dreams, but I wanted to do things my way…
After agonizing over this and that, I got up early on Sundays and started watching Digimon for research, and I ended up forgetting everything and getting super absorbed in the show (laughs).
So I went to the recording more nervous and yet excited than ever before, and “FOREVER FRIENDS” has become a very precious song that Digimon gave to everyone.
I’m really grateful for the wonderful experience!
With all of my love to the all of the “friends” who love Digimon!

Hiroaki Hirata (voice of Leomon, Digimon Adventure and Digimon Adventure 02 narration; Theater Company Subaru)

I was cast as the narrator for Digimon Adventure, which was such a huge role that I started off the series with my head stiff from all the nervousness.
I had to play a lot of other Digimon characters too, and it was a lot of fun, and also very difficult…
Singing is my weak point, so I remember going through a lot of stress, but when we all got together in the huge studio and sang together in a chorus, it was so much fun…
100 releases is really amazing~!
I look forward to seeing even more adventures!
That’s all from Leomon here. Roar~!!

Nobuyuki Hiyama (voice of Seraphimon, BlackWarGreymon; Arts Vision)

Firstly, congratulations on the 100 releases.
“100” feels like something that’s far more easily said than done, so it must have taken a lot of work to get to this point.
Now, I, Hiyama, have played two characters in Digimon, “BlackWarGreymon” and “Seraphimon”, but I unfortunately wasn’t able to be in any songs.
So when you get to 150 or 200 releases, please find a way to get Hiyama in there (laughs).

Mamoru Hosoda (theatrical movie director; Toei Animation)

I didn’t get to be involved with much for the Digimon series, but I personally have a very strong impression of it.
In particular, I find myself accidentally humming “Requiem” to myself at times.
For instance, whenever I show up to work, I end up singing it.
Or even in the mornings when I’m picking a necktie…or even when I’m walking my beloved dog, or when I’m making barbecue in the backyard.
Of course, it also happens to be my cell phone ringtone, so my juniors say to me “oh, Chief! What song is that?”

Yuka Imai (voice of Renamon)

This all took me back to when I was recording for Tamers, playing Ruki’s partner Renamon.
That year went by in a flash, and I felt like I got to grow alongside Renamon.
I think I was able to make a ton of really wonderful memories with Tamers.
All of this was thanks to everyone who supported us.
Thank you so much.
Hoping the best for the Digimon series from here on out!!
In closing, let me leave off with a line from Renamon (laughs).
Renamon: “Don’t give up on your dreams. And have the courage to protect those you love to the very end!”

Takahiro Imamura (theatrical movie director; Toei Animation)

“What the Eye Hears, What the Ear Sees”
That’s the name of the song from the climax of Digimon Adventure 02: Diablomon Strikes Back, when Daisuke and his friends and all of the other “Chosen Children” gathered in Odaiba try to prevent the split-up Kuramon from gathering again, and all of the cell phone ringtones start playing and lead into the song.
That name comes from a famous drawn-on-film work “The Eye Hears, the Ear Sees” from famous animator Norman McLaren.
“Drawn-on-film animation” refers to an animation technique that involves using something like a needle to directly etch drawings on film, but McLaren would visually carve out sound on the edge of the film, creating a work where you could see the sounds in it.
“The Eye Hears, the Ear Sees” was one of those works, and both the carved-out drawings and the carved-out sounds looked like they were dancing together in unison, in motion and sound.
While I don’t mean it literally, I’ve personally always tried to make works where you can really visualize the scenes.
So the sound of Taichi using Hikari’s whistle, and the sound of Yamato playing the harmonica for Takeru, the scenes of those memories, all resound over Odaiba and become phone ringtones.
Those two sounds are the lynchpin going through the Digimon Adventure series, and as they play through simple ringtones, they invoke all of the sounds and melodies that played throughout the series. While the audience watches the Kuramon being retrieved, I hoped everyone who loved the series would remember everything Taichi and Daisuke and their friends did.
So the title of that song, “What the Eye Hears, What the Ear Sees” came from my personal thoughts about this.
So when you listen to NEC Interchannel’s Digimon music, I hope you can remember everything Taichi, Daisuke, Takato, Takuya, and their friends did.

McLaren’s title “The Eye Hears, the Ear Sees” actually seems to itself be a reference to Shakespeare’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream.
To me, Digimon is, in a sense, something that’s let me achieve my “dreams”.

Tetsuo Imazawa (theatrical movie director; Toei Animation)

I was director for the Digimon Tamers summer movie, The Adventurers’ Battle.
It came from the idea of having virtual Digimon in a fully natural environment.
The staff really made that scene with Guilmon swimming through the coral reef and insert song “Sea of Friends” with Okinawan instruments playing into the most fun it could possibly be.
I’m truly grateful to them.

Sawa Ishige (voice of Izumi Orimoto; Actor’s Cooperative)

Congratulations on 100 releases!
No, seriously, that’s amazing!
I’m sure everyone’s got their own memories and their own favorits among all of these songs…
Personally, my favorite is AiM-san’s “Stand By Me ~A Single Summer’s Adventure~”.
It’s the ending for the Digimon Adventure 02 summer movie, and it’s really got such a warm and nostalgic feeling, but also a very lonely one…I get a different impression of it every time I listen to it.
I really love it.
I also hope Izumi’s “Drops From the Wind” will resound through people’s hearts.

Ai Iwamura (voice of MarineAngemon; Toei Academy)

Congratulations on reaching 100 CDs!
It’s been half a year since the Tamers broadcast ended, and a year since I got to meet MarineAngemon.
Time passes by so fast!
Thanks to Marine, I got to have a lot of first experiences with new things (although that comes from being a voice actor to begin with).
To be honest, there were so many new things that I was desperately flailing around and not sure what I was doing, but now I can look back on it calmly and go through each memory one by one, and all of it feels so nostalgic when I think about it.
I’m sure I must have imposed way more of a burden on everyone in the cast and staff than I’d hoped.
But despite that, whenever I messed up and was feeling distressed about it, they called out to me and taught me the ropes, saying things like “why don’t you try doing this instead?”, and I’m really grateful to them.
They were really, really encouraging.
I never really got the chance to thank them properly, so I’m using this space here to do it.
Thank you so much!
Now, the current topic for this booklet is “anecdotes about things to do with DiGiMONMUSiC”, but MarineAngemon certainly had his own way of singing, didn’t he?!
I just want to say…I-I’m really sorry.
Music recording was another “first experience” for me, so I was thoroughly nervous, and if you ask me about what I remember, it’s more like when we were all saying “Aoyama-san is so good at singing~” and having fun, and how delicious the lunchbox was…
Unfortunately, my singing skills are almost nonexistent, so I was singing with everything I could (after it released, I read comments on the Internet saying “I can tell Marine was trying really hard to sing,” and I was thoroughly relieved from the bottom of my heart).
But it’s amazing how it’s basically nothing but pa-pi-pu-pe-po, isn’t it?!
Even though there’s some actually good words in there5
But it’s funny, so it’s fine.
I’ve actually cried listening to a Digimon song before.
If I say the song name, you’ll all know why, so I can’t tell you (laughs).
I was really struck by it because it was the first time I felt so encouraged by a song.
I owe a lot to it.
I’m really glad I could leave a message like this in the celebratory 100th release booklet.
Please keep at it so we can get to 200 releases!
I’ll be cheering you on.
Sorry for writing something so awkward, but thank you for reading.
See you again!

Toshirou Iwasaki (sound director; Fuji Pacific Music Publishing)

Happy 100 releases!
How amazing!
And thank you to al of the lyricists and composers who worked so hard to make all of these wonderful songs we’ve had.
Theme songs, insert songs, BGM, character songs, Christmas songs, and more…all of it make up the fruits of everyone’s love and labor.
These 100 CDs are full of the children and Digimon’s feelings, and an abnormal amount of effort was put into singing all of these.
And thank you to all of the participants who answered all of these unreasonable requests, I don’t think anyone ever had a single face of protest?
Thanks to you all, DiGiMONMUSiC is now full of so many wonderful works that I personally love.
In closing, thank you to Chiba-san and Matsui-san, who stayed up all night not going home, working to finish this commemorative CD. I hope that this piece of DiGiMONMUSiC will reach kids all around the world, and I hope they can return the favor with words of gratitude and well wishes for their good health.

  1. “Oricon” = Referring to the Oricon rankings that post weekly Japanese sales rankings, most famously for singles and albums. []
  2. Enka = A style of Japanese music that was particularly popular in the 1950s-70s. “Manly Flying Spit” is in this style. []
  3. Shiki Theatre Company = A Japanese theatre company that has been performing since the 50s, known for their wide range of performances. []
  4. M*g*c** Do**Mi” = Most likely referring to Magical DoReMi, a 1999-2003 magical girl series that was produced by Toei Animation concurrently with Digimon. Both series shared a producer (Hiromi Seki), as well as many other production aspects. []
  5. While MarineAngemon’s character song “Ocean Smile” is indeed nothing but variants of “pa-pi-pu-pe-po”, the official lyrics booklet reveals a cohesive “Japanese translation” for it (translated to English here). []

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