Grammy Museum – May 15, 2023
Live Report and Photos by Christan Copeland (Ceceemagery)
YOSHIKI, the legendary Japanese rock artist and composer, made a poignant announcement at The Grammy Museum for his upcoming classical world tour entitled “Requiem.” On May 15, press and X Japan fans enjoyed a one-night-only, intimate Q&A and performance by the renowned leader of X Japan and The Last Rockstars. The timing of YOSHIKI’s tour announcement, just after Mother’s Day and a year after his own mother’s passing, added a deeply personal significance to the event.
During an intimate Q&A session with the press and fans, YOSHIKI revealed his parents’ profound influence on his musical journey. He recounted how his exploration of music began with a piano gifted to him on his birthday and continued with various instrumental gifts in subsequent years. His dream of becoming a rock star was ignited after attending a KISS concert with his mother as his chaperone.
The centerpiece of the tour, “Requiem” is a composition born out of YOSHIKI’s journey through grief, with his “tears turned into music” serving as the alchemy to his healing. As reflected in the documentary We Are X, YOSHIKI’s artistic pursuits are driven by his desire to create music that touches people. YOSHIKI confided to the audience that he approaches every show as if it were his last, declaring that writing and performing music has saved him, and continues to save him and his fans. The “Requiem” tour serves as a tribute to YOSHIKI’s classical journey, influences, passions, and, most importantly, a tribute to his biggest supporter, his mother.
Performance Highlights: YOSHIKI’s live performance at The Grammy Museum offered a glimpse into his illustrious compositions that captivate fans of classical music and rock. Accompanied by the Orchid Quartet, who have been collaborating with YOSHIKI for a decade, the orchestral performances blended the ambiance of a symphony with the energy of a jam session. The setlist featured a mix of YOSHIKI’s well-known works as well as the debut of brand-new pieces.
The show began with “Tears,” a moving composition dedicated to YOSHIKI’s late father. This was followed by “Angel,” X-Japan’s first major release in eight years, set to premiere on July 28th. For the classical debut of this new track, Yoshiki was joined by special guest vocalist Beverly, whose robust and angelic vocals added a beautiful touch to the performance. Operatic soprano Ashley, another guest performer, joined YOSHIKI for a rousing rendition of his composition “Miracle”, originally sung in collaboration with Sarah Brightman. The caliber of YOSHIKI’s collaborations serves as a testament to his musical prowess and artistry. Before and after each guest performance, Yoshiki audibly checked their availability for his tour. Audience members chimed in their appreciation for the vocalists, requesting Yoshiki hire the singers for the tour, to which Yoshiki wittily responds, “I just did.” Beverly returned to the stage once more to perform the Attack on Titan theme song “Red Swan,” originally sung by a fellow member of The Last Rockstars, renowned vocalist HYDE.
Concluding the concerto, YOSHIKI performed “Requiem,” the ode to his mother, followed by X Japan’s beloved song “Endless Rain.” YOSHIKI’s intimate night of conversation and music evoked candid laughter, leaving hardly a dry eye or unmoved heart in the audience. His ability to intertwine his classical training with his rock sensibilities results in inspired works with innovative artists. The upcoming “Requiem” tour promises to be a night of celebration, communion, and healing—a testament to the enduring love and support fans have shown YOSHIKI and X Japan throughout the years.
YOSHIKI at The Grammy Museum Live Performance Setlist:
2. Angel feat. Beverly
4. Imitation Rain
5. Red Swan feat. Beverly (Attack on Titan theme song)
7. Endless Rain (X Japan)